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Avoid A&E unless you are very ill’ urge health board chiefs

PEOPLE are being asked to avoid Morriston Hospital’s A&E unless they are really ill or have had a serious accident.

The department, along with its equivalent at Bridgend’s Princess of Wales Hospital are extremely busy.

PEOPLE are being asked to avoid Morriston Hospital’s A&E unless they are really ill or have had a serious accident.

The department, along with its equivalent at Bridgend’s Princess of Wales Hospital are extremely busy.

Patients with minor conditions are warned they will face long waits and should instead consult their GP or use the minor injury units at Neath Port Talbot and Singleton hospitals.

Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University (ABMU) Health Board has also revealed that Tonna and Neath Port Talbot hospitals have been hit by flu — and urged those at risk from the illness to have a flu jab as soon as possible.

 The at-risk group includes pregnant women, people aged 65 and over, carers, and those with a chronic health condition.

Dr Sara Hayes, ABMU’s director of public health, said: “It is vital that anyone who falls into the at-risk groups have their flu jab straight away, as it is evident that flu is circulating in the community and people are getting really ill from it. All NHS staff must also get their flu jab if they haven’t already had it, to protect themselves, their patients and their own families.”

 Regarding the A&E backlog, emergency department consultant Andy MacNab said: “Over the last few days we’ve had a lot of patients turn up in the emergency department presenting with a condition which has deteriorated over several days, but they hadn’t gone to their GP first.

“My advice is if you start to feel ill, see your GP or pharmacist early.”

 He stressed that turning up at the emergency department first did not mean patients got treatment any quicker, as often GPs can access tests and specialist advice directly.

He added that anyone with a dental problems should contact NHS Direct Wales on 0845 4647 for details of an emergency dentist.

 Louise Platt, head of operations for the Welsh Ambulance Service ABMU area, added: “NHS Direct Wales, out-of-hour GP services and pharmacies are all available for healthcare and advice for minor illnesses and injuries. Please remember only to dial 999 if someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk.”

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