Withybush Hospital PACU paediatric unit opening hours 10am-6pm from next week

Opening hours at Withybush Paediatric Ambulatory Care Unit will be changed to 10am-6pm from Monday December 5.
The move comes following a decision, taken in the interests of patient safety due to a shortage of consultant paediatricians, by Hywel Dda University Health Board last week.
Referrals to PACU can continue to be made up until 6pm, after which necessary discharges or transfers to Glangwili Hospital when an overnight stay in hospital is required will be made.
Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Operations Joe Teape explained: “We are carefully planning this temporary change and will be spending a lot of time during the coming days finalising the activation plan and making sure that all our staff, GPs, including out-of-hours, and partners such as the Welsh Ambulance Services Trust and NHS Direct are aware and are able to appropriately advise and assist children and their families.”
A task and finish group with clinicians and managers is also being set up to closely monitor the change and ensure further work is progressed in areas including recruitment, technology and engagement with the pubic on a longer term plan to restore the service to a 12 hour one. Weekly updates will be provided to Hywel Dda Community Health Council, as well as regular updates for the general public.
The temporary change has been put in place as a result of national challenges in the recruitment of consultant paediatricians combined with particular problems in Pembrokeshire due to the retirement of one consultant coinciding with maternity leave of another and sickness.
The temporary service change, which will be active from next week, reflects the 10am-10pm model that has been in place and has been providing safe care since service change two years ago, but from the new times of 10am-6pm and with remote consultant paediatric support from Glangwili Hospital at night.
Parents should continue to access healthcare services for children in the usual ways.
If your child is unwell, you can do a number of things:
Call NHS Direct Wales – 0845 46 47 – they can advise you if you are unsure what to do, as well as provide health information on a wide range of conditions, treatment and local health services
Use your community pharmacy if open
Make an appointment with your GP as usual, including out-of- hours GP services, which are contacted through your normal GP telephone number
For a paediatric minor injury, go to Withybush Emergency and Urgent Care Centre (EUCC) 24 hours a day
In an emergency, if your child is very sick, you should dial 999 for assistance. Children who present at Withybush Hospital out-of-hours will usually be transferred to Glanwgili Hospital for paediatric input. In the exceptional circumstance where emergency resuscitation is required, emergency and anaesthetic staff will resuscitate, stabilise, and arrange transfer onto another hospital.
In the meantime, the health board continues to reduce the impact on families as much as possible. This includes provision of the dedicated ambulance vehicle for transfers between Withybush and Glangwili hospitals, provision of funded transport schemes such as that provided by Action for Children, help under the NHS Travel Costs scheme and, in exceptional circumstances where no alternatives are available, vulnerable families will be provided with a paid for taxi to return home.
Recruitment efforts will continue, both for substantive, permanent posts and locum (temporary) paediatric consultants. The health board has secured an agency consultant for an extended period of three months and is interviewing a potential candidate for a role at either Withybush or Bronglais hospitals in January. Adverts for Advanced Paediatric Nurse Practitioners are also being placed.


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