MP seeks meeting with Oswestry hospital bosses over plans to axe pain service
An MP is seeking a meeting with hospital bosses over a decision to axe a vital pain service used by hundreds of patients in Shropshire and Mid Wales.
Last week the Orthopaedic Hospital in Oswestry announced that its pain services, which help reduce suffering and enhance people's quality of life, are ceasing on March 31 after a change in NICE guidelines.
An internal review found the service was too fragile to continue safely as a result of operational and clinical challenges, which resulted in a small clinical team delivering the service to all patients.
About 50 patients in Shropshire use the service, but it is anticipated about 400 will be hit in Mid and North Wales.
Montgomeryshire MP Glyn Davies is seeking a meeting with hospital bosses after being contacted by concerned constituents worried about their future care.
He said: "I am very concerned by reports from constituents that a ‘pain clinic’ at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital is to close.
"I am seeking a meeting at the hospital to clarify the position and to discuss what reasons lie behind any change in access to pain relief services at Gobowen.
"It’s also crucial that if a change of policy about access to a pain relief service does go ahead, satisfactory alternative plans are put in place."
Some concerned patients are unclear of where they will be able to access future treatment that they have previously received at the hospital.
Adrian Evans suffered a fall in 2003 and injured his spine, but after receiving treatment in 2010 he was able to work again.
He was shocked to receive the closure letter and believes his quality of life will deteriorate without the service.
He said: "It is shocking and people have been left in the dark. I just don't know what I am going to do after March 31.
"It is shocking the service is being taken away."
A spokeswoman for Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board said about 30 patients from North Wales who attended the clinic will have alternative arrangements made for them.
A spokesman for Powys Teaching Health Board said: "We have already begun to refer patients to our own service.
"As well as face-to-face appointments our service also offers initial consultations by telephone and a range of ongoing programmes that can be accessed via Skype. This means that many patients can receive ongoing support in their own home.”