THE £350-million Grange University Hospital opens today, providing the people of Gwent with a state-of-the-art centre for the region’s most-seriously ill and injured patients.

With the opening comes sweeping changes to how Aneurin Bevan University Health Board (ABUHB) delivers many of its hospital services.

The Grange will become Gwent’s only hospital for accident and emergency (A&E) care.

From this week, there will be no A&E departments at the health board’s other general hospitals – the Royal Gwent in Newport and Nevill Hall in Abergavenny.

This means anyone with a life-threatening injury or illness must attend the Grange, located in Llanfrechfa, Cwmbran.

The health board’s goal is to centralise critical-care services in the new hospital, achieving the highest standard of care with top-of-the-range facilities.

This means people with serious trauma injuries – or with health problems including severe breathing difficulties, severe pain or bleeding, chest pain, a suspected stroke – must not attend the Royal Gwent, Nevill Hall, or any other ABUHB hospitals to be treated.

Instead, you must go straight to the Grange, or call 999.

But minor injuries will continue to be treated at ABUHB’s other hospitals. You should not go to the Grange with a minor injury – these would include broken or dislocated bones, minor wounds and burns, minor neck and back injuries, minor head and facial injuries, and bites.

If you suffer from an injury like this, you should go to one of ABUHB’s Minor Injury Units.

The Royal Gwent, Nevill Hall, and Ystrad Mynach’s Ysbyty Ystrad Fawr will continue to run 24-hour Minor Injury Units.

Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan, in Ebbw Vale, will run a Minor Injury Unit on weekdays, 9am-7pm.

But Minor Injury Units do not treat minor illnesses – if you are unsure whether or not you should visit a Minor Injury Unit, you should call 111 for help and advice.


Dr Tim Rogerson, clinical director and consultant in emergency medicine at ABUHB, said the Grange would be “just for those very sick and injured patients”.

As a result, most patients arriving at the Grange will do so by ambulance – although the health board will allow people to arrive by other means of transport.

The new hospital has been designed specially to locate important services next to each other, to reduce waiting times for patients and speed up diagnoses.

This means the Grange will be best-placed to deal with critical-care patients, even in cases when people may have to travel further to the hospital than they previously would have had to.

Dr Rogerson sought to reassure people concerned about longer travel times to the new hospital.

"It's much better to have a purpose-built facility where we've centralised the services," he said. "We've got a senior level of decision-making – we've got consultants here, late into the night, so actually the care you'll receive in this facility will be of a standard that those extra few minutes of a journey won't actually affect you in the long-run.

"You'll have a better outcome."

Dr Rogerson said there was already good evidence that a centralised, specialised location can provide better treatment.

"For quite a few years, stroke care has been centralised at the Royal Gwent," he said. "You might have a stroke in the middle of Abergavenny, but for years you'll [have been taken] to the Royal Gwent.

"And that's going to be the same now – we're centralising on one site and hopefully increasing the standard of care we can deliver for all of the conditions that present here."

The opening of the Grange also marks a change in how paediatric care is delivered in Gwent.

From now on, all children aged under one year old will need to be seen at the Grange – regardless of how seriously ill they are.

For children aged one or over, the system will work in the same way that adult care is being transformed.

Children aged one or over who require emergency treatment will go to the Grange, where specialist children’s doctors and nurses will be based.

Similarly, all children’s hospital beds and the Children’s Emergency Assessment Unit will be at the Grange.

But children aged one or over who have minor injuries should go to their local Minor Injury Unit at the Royal Gwent, Nevill Hall, Ysbyty Ystrad Fawr, or Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan.

  • The Grange University Hospital is located in Caerleon Road, Llanfrechfa, Cwmbran, NP44 8YN. The hospital is also reachable via the Newport Bus 29 service. If you are unwell but are unsure which hospital to attend, contact your GP or call 111 for help and advice.