ROADS leading to the new £350 million Grange University Hospital in Cwmbran must be brought up to scratch to ensure patients needing emergency care can get there in good time, a Gwent AM has said.

The new facility in Llanfrechfa is due to open in 2021, and will include a 24-hour acute assessment unit and emergency department, diagnostic services, operating theatres, a consultant-led obstetric unit and a paediatric assessment unit.

But, speaking in the Senedd earlier this week, Monmouth AM Nick Ramsay said he was concerned the state of some roads in the hospital's catchment area across south east Wales could cause problems for patients needing emergency care.


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"The project is looking good, and we hope that it will provide a first-class patient experience when complete," he said. "But attention is now turning to the transport links to that new critical care centre, because it will cover a much larger area than the existing critical care centres at Newport and Abergavenny, the latter of which covers south Powys as well.

South Wales Argus: CONCERN: Nick Ramsay, Tory AM for Monmouth and shadow business minister

"We know - and I’ve asked the minister for transport about this in the past - that there are problems with the A4042 between Abergavenny and Cwmbran, particularly at Llanellen, south of Abergavenny, which is prone to heavy flooding.

"I don’t think we’ve got a solution to that problem yet."

South Wales Argus:

Nick Ramsay

Addressing first minister Mark Drakeford, the Conservative AM asked: "I wonder if we could have an answer as to what has been done to alleviate flooding at that point so that constituents of (Brecon and Radnorshire AM) Kirsty Williams in Powys will be able to get down to the new critical care centre by ambulance, as well as my own constituents, and also a wider look at trunk roads around Monmouthshire and Gwent to make sure that all patients, whichever part of that area they come from, are able to access the new facilities at this critical care centre as they would hope to do."

Replying, the first minister said £24 million is being invested into 'pinch points' on roads across Wales where problems are most prevalent, and a review of speed limits on trunk roads across the country is currently being carried out, and will look at more than 600 sites across Wales

"Transport to the new hospital has been integral to the planning of that site from the very beginning," he said "It was one of the issues that were put forward as being on the side of that site when it was first proposed and it is entirely in everybody’s interest to make sure that patients from the whole of the catchment area are able to find their way in a timely fashion for the treatments that that fantastic new centre will now provide."