ARGUS COMMENT: Hospital fears need looking at
11:01am Tuesday 3rd September 2013 in Gwent news
THE BRITISH Medical Association's critique of plans to reform hospital services regionally in Wales, pulls no punches.
In fact, the report by the doctors' association is devastating in its criticism of the basis of those reforms, describing them as 'dangerous'.
The problem is that all four suggestions for reforming hospital services across South Wales include a reliance on the creation of the Specialist and Critical Care Centre at Llanfrechfa, Cwmbran.
It forms a vital component in all four options under discussion.
But given that the project has not yet been formally approved and perhaps, equally importantly, that it is likely to be many years before it is built, the BMA is warning that this is not a valid basis for such a radical reform.
And given the length of time it has taken for this new hospital plan to get to where it is today, we can understand that concern.
Anuerin Bevan Health Board first floated the idea for a specialist and critical care centre to take over much of what is currently offered at the Royal Gwent Hospital, Newport, 10 years ago.
Since then there have been numerous twists and turns and still there is no cast-iron guarantee from the Assembly that it will go ahead.
What is needed now is a decision and a time frame and maybe then, talk of more reform for the NHS in South Wales would seem more palatable.
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