Urgent care is Welsh priority

A shake-up of services in Wales will mean the introduction of urgent care centres across the country.

The centres will be located near A&E departments and will be staffed by GPs and nurses to reduce A&E admissions. Some may open 24 hours a day.

The plans are part of the Delivering Emergency Care Services strategy, unveiled last week by Welsh health minister Edwina Hart, which is designed to prevent unnecessary admissions to A&E.

Telehealth technology will be installed in rural minor injury clinics to monitor patients with long-term conditions in their homes.

The centres will be staffed by GPs, nurses and other health professionals.

'It's about ensuring that patients get the right care, at the right time, by the right person - and it is also a more efficient use of NHS resources,' Ms Hart added.

The scheme is being piloted in four local health boards (LHBs) and feedback will determine how it is implemented across Wales.

The four early adopter sites are Conwy and Denbighshire, Pembrokeshire, Rhondda Cynon Taff and Merthyr, and Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot LHBs.

Ms Hart also announced that seven NHS trusts across Wales would merge to from three 'super trusts'. LHBs also face re-organisation.

tom.ireland@haymarket.com

Delivering Emergency Care Services

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