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Latest update from health board on ‘extreme pressures’ on local NHS services

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Statement to service users from Hywel Dda University Health Board:

FOLLOWING the postponement of planned inpatient operations across our four hospital sites earlier this week, we are beginning to see some improvements with around half of our planned procedures being carried out across the health board in the last 48 hours. We would like to reiterate our apologies to those patients that have been affected and provide our assurance that we will look to rearrange operations as soon as possible.

The actions taken in line with our integrated Winter resilience plan have helped us to reduce the extreme pressures experienced at the beginning of the week, and as of today (Friday 10 January) all hospital sites are operating below peak escalation status. However, our services remain under pressure and we are anticipating another busy weekend ahead across our hospital A&E departments, Out of Hours and community GP services, and we would continue to urge patients to seek alternatives if you can.

If you or a loved one are unwell or injured, there may be other services that can provide the care that you need:

• Online symptom checker: Check your symptoms online at NHS Direct Wales here https://www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk/selfassessments/
• Self care – A lot of illnesses can be treated in your home by using over the counter medicine and getting plenty of rest. Keep a well prepared first aid kit at home: Bandages, plasters, thermometer, antiseptic, eyewash solution, sterile dressings, medical tape, and tweezers.
• Pharmacies – your local pharmacy can to do much more than dispense medication and could save a trip to your GP or hospital. For free confidential NHS advice and treatment for a range of common ailments eye infections and chicken pox, your pharmacist can help. Find out what services are available at your local pharmacy by visiting www.hywelddahb.wales.nhs.uk/communitypharmacy
• NHS Direct Wales / Out of Hours services – telephone 111 if your need is urgent and you can’t wait to make an appointment with your usual GP
• Minor Injury Units (MIUs) – To find out the opening times of our MIUs please visit http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/862/page/52065

Please do not attend an emergency department or GP practice if you have symptoms of an infectious illness such diarrhoea, vomiting, fever or symptoms of flu. Flu and norovirus are circulating and for the majority of people these can be treated safely at home. However, if you are vulnerable (very young, frail elderly, living with long term or chronic conditions) or your symptoms worsen, please seek medical advice.

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Appeal after woman sexually assaulted on cycle path near Haverfordwest

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POLICE officers in Haverfordwest are appealing for witnesses after a woman was sexually assaulted at approximately 4.30pm on Sunday (May 16).

The woman was walking along the cycle path between Haverfordwest and Tiers Cross when she was approached by a man who threatened and assaulted her, before walking away towards Haverfordwest town.

The male is described as a white male, between 5ft 4 and 5ft 11 tall , normal build with a welsh accent. He has short dark hair, a beard and a moustache, brown eyes, and wearing light blue jeans, navy/dark blue jersey with grey sleeves. Anyone who saw a man matching this description in the area between 3.30pm and 5pm in the afternoon.

A 35-year-old man has been arrested and is currently in police custody.

The cycle path is currently closed while the investigation continues.

Detective Superintendent Jayne Butler, who is leading the investigation, said “Incidents of this nature are extremely rare in the Dyfed-Powys area. The public may see an increased presence of police officers in the coming days as police investigate the incident. Anyone with concerns or information that could help our enquiries can speak to those officers or contact police. While a man was quickly arrested we would still like to speak to anyone who saw a man matching the above description in the area yesterday afternoon.”

Anyone with information which could help the investigation is asked to contact police. This can be done online at bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.pnn.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired, text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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Pembrokeshire County Council Cabinet endorses STEP Fusion application

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL’S Cabinet have today endorsed proposals from Cllr Paul Miller (Cabinet Member for Economic Development) to further progress the nomination of a Pembrokeshire site to host a Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) fusion power station in the county.

Working with the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), the proposed site is adjacent to the existing energy facilities on the South Shore of the Haven waterway.

If approved, the facility will initially host research with the ultimate aim of developing this technology which could offer a virtually limitless source of clean electricity by copying the processes that power the sun.

Cllr Paul Miller, Cabinet Member for Economic Development said: “I am pleased my Cabinet colleagues endorsed this important programme of work. The Haven Waterway has provided livelihoods, underpinned by fossil fuels, for thousands of Pembrokeshire families, mine included, for more than 50 years. It’s my job to help ensure the waterway continues to provide high skilled, engineering, science and technology jobs for the next generation of this county – and so linked to our focus on climate change (and in addition to our existing multi-million pound commitments to supporting wind, wave and tidal clean power generation) my team have been exploring whether we can also support the development of clean, green fusion technology.

“It’s very early days in the UK Atomic Energy Authority’s site selection process but we’ll provide regular updates as things progress.”

•       STEP is an ambitious programme to design and build a prototype fusion power plant;
•       It is a UKAEA programme, currently with £222m funding from the UK Government to produce a concept design by 2024: https://step.ukaea.uk/

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Re-opening of indoor hospitality and attractions at Milford Waterfront

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RESTAURANTS and indoor visitor attractions in Milford Waterfront are welcoming the return of indoor services from today.

The re-opening of indoor dining allows all restaurants at Milford Waterfront to seat customers indoors. As well as all restaurants on the Waterfront now being able to offer this service, the brand-new Foam Domes overlooking the Milford Haven Waterway are able to open, with bookings being taken from the 19th May.

Indoor visitor attractions are also allowed to re-open. This includes the Waterfront Gallery, which is open today and Phoenix Bowl & Pirate Pete’s Adventure Play which is making preparations to open from Wednesday 19th May. Also, Milford Museum, which has had a new rendered exterior finish, is preparing to open for the end of May.

Lucy Wonnacott, Marketing Manager for Milford Waterfront commented: “We are delighted to see the re-opening of indoor hospitality and visitor attractions here at Milford Waterfront. Each business has their own safety and social distancing measures in place and we kindly ask that you respect and adhere to these for your own safety, and that of others. We hope you enjoy your visit to Milford Waterfront and stay safe!”

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