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Questions for new GP team




The new team: Dr Huw Perry, Nia Griffith, Dr Paul Williams and Dr Devichand

The new team: Dr Huw Perry, Nia Griffith, Dr Paul Williams and Dr Devichand

A MEETING to introduce the new team of doctors to the patients of Dr Devichand took place at the Selwyn Samuel Centre in Llanelli on Wednesday (Sept 23). Dr Christie Melyn was absent but Dr Huw Perry and Dr Paul Williams were introduced to a room packed with patients and began to inform the crowd about their plans for the practice.

An element of panic appeared to set in amongst some of the people regarding whether or not they would be able to see a doctor without having to battle with a receptionist or wait for hours in a waiting room.

Patients also questioned whether they would be able to have consistency by seeing the same doctor. Questions were also asked regarding the telephone system, the waiting times, the home visits and the prescription of drugs.

Doctors attempted to address many of the questions but a number of people did not appear to accept their explanations.

Dr Huw Perry said: “There has been a lot of uncertainty and anxiety but what we are saying is that nothing is going to change for some time. The model we have is that Dr Devichand will stay as long as he wants to. Upon his retirement other doctors will service the practice. We need new premises and The Health Board are looking at that with us. We would like to stay within reach of the existing practice. You are triaged (assignment of degrees of urgency to wounds or illnesses to decide the order of treatment of a large number of patients or casualties) by the doctors not a nurse or a receptionist.

“People can phone and they may get a receptionist but they don’t have to divulge their problem if they do not want to. They will get called back regardless. The call comes in and they will get a call back from a doctor who has their records on view. They don’t have to sit in a waiting room in this way. They will be seen when it is suitable to them.”

Dr Paul Williams told the patients: “We decided to work together and I know a lot of you will be anxious about any changes but there won’t be any initially. Changes will be made and brought in very slowly. You will still be able to see Dr Devichand in Andrew Street and Dafen. We are trying to source new premises because the ones we have now are restrictive.”

Looking to changes in the range of services offered, Dr Williams continued: “We want to offer more extensive services like minor surgery and complex joint injections. We would like to make life easier for you. For people on warfarin we would like to increase that service level. We would also like to offer contraceptive implants. Everybody is given access to a doctor by phone or face to face the same day. 50 to 60% of consultations can be done over the telephone. We need to alleviate staff and patient anxiety. This is the fourth practice we have gone into and we have improved them. Nobody needs to be told that they have to wait two weeks to see a doctor.”

Dr Paul Williams said that the doctors had been in business together for three years and that his surgeries and the six doctors were working well and waiting times were low.

He said: “We like to look at what the patient problem is not what the appointment time is. If it is simple and can be dealt with quickly why wait for two weeks or sit in a room for hours when it can be dealt with in three minutes flat? If a patient has a problem, the right person will see them at the right time. It may mean seeing a nurse or alternative practitioners. We want to bring health care to primary care so you get seen and dealt with properly. The thought process of seeing a doctor has to change because there are fewer doctors in Wales. If you are better off seeing someone else then that is what we can work with.”

At the end of the meeting The Herald asked Dr Devichand if it was a tough crowd. He told us: “Things change. It will be better and it is very promising. As long as they see the patients the same day that is the main thing. I am happy with the way they work. Their system has been looked at by the Health Board and they are happy with that.”

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How Wales created 19 new field hospitals in less than 8 weeks…




Across Wales the Welsh Government is supporting the NHS to create new field hospitals and rapidly increase bed capacity.
Health boards have repurposed existing buildings, including the Principality Stadium, a holiday park and even a television studio to provide an additional 6,000 beds.Field hospitals are designed to support the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic by providing extra bed capacity but they will also help normal hospital services be restarted and support social care services.Last month, the first patients were admitted to Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig at the Principality Stadium, in Cardiff.

Four to six weeks

Here is how Wales almost doubled its bed capacity in less than eight weeks…The time it has taken to nearly double hospital bed capacity in Wales, creating field hospitals across the nation.

19 field hospitals in Wales
This includes the repurposing of Bluestone Holiday Park and Parc y Scarlets in west Wales and Venue Cymru in north Wales.

1,500 beds at the Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig
Making it one of the largest field hospitals in the UK.

Five days
The length of time it took to plan Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig, which overlapped with the build phase.

The number of planning hours, involving more than 20 different disciplines, it took to plan Ysbyty Calon y Ddraig.

Welsh Government funding for the set up, construction and equipment for field hospitals in Wales.

The number of pieces of equipment have been provided to help support field hospitals, including beds, imaging equipment, syringe drivers and medicines.

Three North Wales field hospitals have the name Enfys
Meaning rainbow – the symbol of hope and thank you to the NHS during the pandemic.
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7-year-old Mattie from Pembrey takes on home Pen y Fan-tastic challenge for Action for Children




Plucky Mattie Denman will climb the equivalent of Pen y Fan in the drive at her family home in Pembrey on Friday 22nd May to raise funds for Action for Children.

Mattie (7), has always wanted to climb the highest mountain in South Wales and is unable to currently because of the coronavirus pandemic.  As the family exercise at home every day, she decided she wanted to do the 6-mile equivalent journey there while she waits for the chance to do it for real.  Mattie chose Action for Children as her mother, Sian, works for the charity in Carmarthenshire.

Mattie said: ‘My Mammy works for Action for Children and I want to help as well because lots of families need help.  My older brother and sister help Action for Children, so I asked Mammy if I could do something. We exercise everyday walking up and down the drive and I have always wanted to climb Pen y Fan, but we have never done it.

‘Mammy said I could pretend I am walking it and people will give money to the charity. I said brilliant, that is what I am going to do and I am super excited to do it. I will use mammy’s step counter and I hope I can help children that need support especially because it is so hard for some families because of coronavirus.’

Proud mum and family support practitioner for Action for Children, Sian, added: ‘Mattie has a lovely heart and really wanted to do something and I’m very proud she chose Pen y Fan as her home challenge.  Action for Children has been going the extra mile during the coronavirus pandemic continuing to support vulnerable families through phone and video sessions as well as food and help with the basics from our Emergency Appeal Fund. 

‘It is a tremendously challenging time for our families and every bit of money will directly help those in our communities who need it most.  I hope as many people as possible will donate to Mattie’s brilliant fundraising effort, it’ll make it even more special when we finally get to climb Pen y Fan for real.’

If you want to support Mattie’s Pen y Fan challenge please go to:

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Housebuilder launches Coronavirus move in package




A South Wales housebuilder has launched new incentives which mean homes are ‘ready to move into’ during the Covid-19 crisis – without the need for tradespeople or delivery people.

People in Wales are allowed to move into new build houses during the lockdown – and many people have successfully done so.

However, the limitations of social distancing can add extra stress when it comes to having things like dishwashers, washing machines and turf installed in the new property.

That’s why Persimmon Homes West Wales has launched a new incentive package which gives purchasers the chance to buy a house with white goods and flooring already in place.

Sharon Bouhali, sales director at Persimmon Homes West Wales, said: “Our sales advisors have done a terrific job in talking with customers and guiding them through the buying process remotely, without the need of face-to-face meetings.

“It’s been a huge challenge, but we’ve risen to it – and Persimmon has sold more than 120 properties in South Wales during the lockdown period. We have customers moving into their new homes every week.

“But, understandably, some people are cautious about having too many tradespeople and contractors enter their home, even if they are doing their utmost to abide by social distancing rules.

“That’s why we have launched these new packages which mean people can turn the key, unpack and get on with enjoying their new home.”

The package includes carpets and vinyl throughout, turf in the back garden, sliding wardrobes, integrated fridge freezer, integrated washer/dryer, integrated dishwasher and £500 discount towards removal fees.

The deal is on offer at Glas Y Felin in Bridgend, Parc Yr Onnen in Carmarthen, The Bridles in Llanelli, Peterson Park in Pontyclun, Parc Brynderi in Llanelli and Allt Y Celyn in Rhos.

Persimmon’s marketing suites in Wales remain closed for the time being. Visit or call 01792 229800 for details of homes available.

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