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Questions for new GP team

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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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New ward extension opens at Werndale Hospital

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WERNDALE Hospital opens its £1millon ward extension, featuring a suite of new spacious patient en-suite rooms and additional light and airy ward space for new nurses’ stations, new technology and medical equipment, in pleasant and comfortable spaces. 

Werndale is part of Circle Health Group, the UK’s largest provider of private healthcare. The group is carrying out a £125 million redevelopment programme across its 50 hospitals in the UK.

Werndale has a strong history in the village of Bancyfelin, where is has been serving the local communities of Wales for over 32 years.

James Davies, Wales and Scarlets rugby player, from Bancyfelin, cut the ribbon to mark the official opening on Monday 1st August. His nickname “Cubby”, is reference to his brother’s nickname, “Fox”; this refers to the Fox & Hounds pub their parents ran in Bancyfelin, the village where they grew up. Staff and consultants were given the chance to view the new extension, with a small gathering to mark the occasion and celebrate all the hard work that has gone into this project over the last 12 months.

Jacky Jones, Executive Director of Werndale Hospital said: “The investment programme is an exciting opportunity to expand what we can offer to patients at Werndale. Our staff and consultants are delighted with this expansion which will allow us to meet the private healthcare needs of patients and families in Wales and will decrease waiting times which will positively impact the patient’s experience. Having the new patient rooms here increases our ward capacity by 20%, it is a great investment”.

Gaynor Llewellyn, Director of Clinical Services said: “At Werndale we are committed to continuous improvement of clinical facilities and services. We continually invest in the hospital so that we can offer our patients and consultants reassurance when they visit us for treatments”.

Werndale Hospital is seeing increased demand for its services across all specialities particularly orthopaedic surgery, ophthalmology, and general surgery. Nearly 4,000 patients had surgery at Werndale Hospital, Bancyfelin during 2021 and the new investment will enable ward capacity to be increased by 25 per cent.

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M4 closed westbound following lorry fire near Swansea

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A SECTION of the M4 near Swansea was shut on Monday (Aug 8) due to a vehicle fire.

The westbound section of the motorway, between junction 47 at Penllergaer and junction 48 at Hendy closed.

Emergency services were called to the scene, and there was queuing traffic in the area.

Traffic monitoring service Inrix reported: “M4 Westbound closed, queueing traffic due to vehicle fire between J47 A48 (Penllergaer / Swansea West Services) and J48 A4138 Pontardulais Road”

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Police appeal after Llanelli assault: victim required hospital treatment

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DYFED POWYS POLICE is investigating an assault which occurred on Regalia Terrace, Llanelli, Carmarthenshire at about 12.05am, Sunday 3rd July.

The victim required hospital treatment.

Officers have carried out all possible lines of enquiry, and are now appealing for help from the public.

They would like to identify the person in the CCTV image, who may have information that could help the investigation.

Anyone who knows who the person is, or if you believe you are pictured, contact Dyfed-Powys Police.

This can also be done either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk or phoning 101.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Please quote reference DP-20220703-011

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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