Service Update | Strike action 6 and 7 February 2023

On Monday 6 and Tuesday 7 February, services at Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board will be affected by strike action by the Royal College of Nursing, and on Tuesday only, by the Royal College of Midwives and Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

In addition, strike action is planned by GMB and Unite ambulance workers on both days, and is expected to have a significant impact on Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust's ability to respond to 999 calls.

In preparing for this strike action, the Health Board has worked to preserve as many services as possible to maintain patient safety with minimal disruption.

All patients who are expecting treatment or appointments on either the 6 or 7 February will be contacted if their appointment is cancelled. Any appointments that are cancelled will be rearranged and patients will be contacted with a new date.

While we will be maintaining emergency services, we anticipate that demand will increase which may result in longer waits than we would like. Please think if you do need to come to the emergency unit or if you can access alternative advice or care such as your community pharmacy.

Industrial action affecting the Welsh Ambulance Service will result in a change of maternity provision between 6pm on Sunday 5th February 2023 and 6am on Tuesday 7th February. For the safety of mothers and babies, we are not offering a service at Tirion Freestanding Birth Centre during this period of time. For women planning homebirth, we would strongly recommend that you access midwifery-led care within a hospital setting.

All of CTM’s Community Vaccination Centres will be closed for the day for all immunisation appointments. Those affected by this closure have been informed, their appointments cancelled, and new appointments sent out.

For patients directly affected by these changes, the Health Board appreciates this may be frustrating but hopes the public understand the need to keep services safe.

Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust has updated that:

  • Non-clinical call handlers in their Clinical Contact Centres and the number of emergency ambulances able to respond and attend patients will be directly affected.
  • It will also impact the Non-Emergency Patient Transport Service, which many patients depend on to attend hospital appointments.

The public is being encouraged to:

  • Use the NHS 111 Wales website for free health advice and information in the first instance that includes a helpful symptom checker.
  • Consider using community pharmacies for a range of heath advice including the Common Ailments Scheme. A list of community pharmacies that are available out of hours is available here.
  • Stock up on prescription medications and over the counter remedies for common ailments to reduce the risk of falling ill on strike days.
  • Ensure you have adequate first aid kit supplies in the event you need to administer self-care for minor injuries at home.
  • Take extra care during the cold weather to avoid slips, trips and falls, and accidents on the road.
  • Look out for family, friends and neighbours who are especially vulnerable.

Please only call 999 in a serious or life-threatening emergency to keep Welsh Ambulance Services precious resources for those who need them most.

The Health Board respects the right of colleagues to participate in or support lawful strike action in a peaceful and safe manner, appreciating the reasons why many colleagues voted in favour of striking.

The Health Board thanks all patients, public, and communities for their understanding in this matter and would like to thank CTMUHB staff who continue to work hard for their patients and communities in very challenging circumstances.

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Team @ AberdareOnline

Team @ AberdareOnline

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