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Major boost for patients as 'ambitious' £20m Day Surgery Unit prepares to open its doors

Hywel Dda University Health Board is pleased to announce the opening of our brand new £20m Day Surgery Unit at Llanelli’s Prince Philip Hospital, in a major boost to our efforts to tackle surgical waiting lists across the region.

The two new theatres, which have been delivered thanks to funding from Welsh Government, will open on Monday 5 December, allowing us to provide surgery to thousands of patients more quickly across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire, as well as neighbouring health boards.

Ultimately, the theatres will have capacity to run six days of the week and will cover specialties including orthopaedics, general surgery, urology and vascular surgery, although this work will be phased. The unit is designed specifically to reduce the risk of infection, generating a flow of ultra clean air in the operating suites, as well as preparation rooms, anaesthetic rooms, changing facilities and a recovery area.

Maria Battle, Chair of Hywel Dda University Health Board, said: “On behalf of Hywel Dda, I am pleased to announce the opening of the Day Surgery Unit at Prince Philip Hospital as part of our wider recovery plan to rapidly address waiting lists that have grown during the pandemic, and which are really worrying for some of our residents. This is a key priority for the health board.

“We have taken this ambitious step on behalf of our communities and I would like in particular to commend the hard work and commitment from our programme team, clinical staff, and the support of Welsh Government and NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership, without whom this would not have been possible.”

Consultant surgeon and Clinical Director for Scheduled Care, Mr Ken Harries, added: "With this exciting new development in place we are expanding our theatre capacity and days to maximise efficiency and treat patients, some of whom have had significant waits for their surgery.

“This first-class facility will ultimately enable around four to five thousand patients to receive procedures in the unit annually, and together with our approach to recovery, we hope that it will also attract future recruits.”

Executive Director of Strategic Development and Operational Planning, Lee Davies, added: “I am delighted that we are able to announce the opening of the Prince Philip Hospital Day Surgery Unit for the benefit of our patients and wider communities, and would like to thank everyone involved for their effort, skill, shared vision and hard work in making this happen.”

The Minister for Health and Social Services, Eluned Morgan said: “The Welsh Government is really proud to have helped to fund this new unit which will mean that more people will get their operations carried out within the same day – avoiding the need for long stays in Prince Philip hospital. We are really aware that there are many people waiting for surgery and this new unit will speed up the process for those waiting in pain, by treating thousands more patients each year.”