Important Changes to Dyfi Valley Health GP Services

We are sure you know that GP cover is currently a problem in both Machynlleth and Cemmaes Road. We have vacancies for two doctors, and despite nationwide advertising, in both English and Welsh, we have had no applications.

This issue is not confined to the Dyfi Valley – there is a GP shortage across the UK and rural practices have been hit particularly hard. Approximately 20 surgeries have closed across Wales in the last year, and more are due to close. Doctors at Dyfi Valley Health are trying desperately hard to ensure that patient care is protected here.

In these extreme circumstances we have come up with two measures, described below:

We have been able to keep Cemmaes Road branch surgery open, but with reduced opening hours. The surgery will be open all day Monday, all day Tuesday and Thursday morning. We will be closed on a Wednesday and Friday. Poorly patients who have difficulties with transport will be given priority appointments nearest to their home. We appreciate that this is inconvenient for staff and patients. However, to ensure safe medical standards we have no choice. This will be reviewed in September 2018.

Machynlleth surgery will continue its current opening hours as a large proportion of our patients are within a short distance of Machynlleth.

The other measure is a ‘triage system’. This means that when you call the surgery you will be asked a few questions by a trained receptionist, to assess how best to help you as fast as possible. They will then connect you, either in person, or by phone, to the most appropriate member of the medical team. This will start on the 13th August. Triage systems used in other parts of Wales have seen huge improvements in patient satisfaction, with more patients being seen and waiting times for appointments reduced.

Both of these decisions have been taken in conjunction with the local health board, who support us fully.

We apologise if any patients have felt out of the loop in the changes over recent months. Please be assured that we are fighting to keep (and improve) your health services. If you have any questions or concerns then please contact our practice manager Mrs Lucy Cockram.

Dr J Shaw, Dr L Hyde, Dr S Bradbury-Willis