A Cardiff and Vale NHS Health Board plan – designed to prevent ambulances having to queue for hours to unload patients outside the main University Health Board Hospital at the Heath in Cardiff – appears to have come badly unstuck.
The plan had been outlined in a briefing to Penarth Town Council this month by Maria Battle, chair of the Cardiff and Vale Health Board which runs the National Health Service in Penarth, Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan .
On November 2nd Ms Battle had told Penarth councillors that there had been instances of ambulances being held outside the Health Hospital back in March this year “but not much before that or since”
Ms Battle claimed that the cause of the previous ambulance queues back in March this year was “because something happened with the domiciliary care service within Cardiff.” She told councillors “Now we’ve worked very hard with them and they [Cardiff Council] are putting their own domiciliary care staff in – so that there isn’t a repetition”.
She had also re-assured Penarth councillors this month that the problem had been thoroughly analyzed in July and what she described as ” a massive plan” had been drawn up which would minimise future delays.
But on Sunday all that came badly unstuck and there was chaos yet again outside the Health Hospital .
An ambulance driver shot a video of more than a dozen ambulances – all with patients on board – waiting outside the hospital for Cardiff and Vale NHS staff to take them into the building. Some patients were waiting in an ambulance for more than four hours.
The driver told Media Wales “This has driven me to the edge and I fully intend to seek alternative employment as I am mentally beaten. This is not a one-off or an unusually busy day , this is a serious matter that needs to be highlighted so there is pressure put on the hospital and the current Welsh Government.”