Could this care project end bed-blocking in hospitals across Wales?

  • Video report by ITV Wales' Health Reporter Ellie Pitt

A new social care project introduced on the Llyn Peninsula could be the answer to bed-blocking in hospitals.

Empty bungalows in Penrhos Polish Village have been converted into rehabilitation units.

Patients who are well enough to leave hospital, but unable to go home yet as their care package isn't ready or available, can stay in the accommodation.

The initiative is an attempt to solve the problem of bed-blocking and free up vital bed space in hospitals sooner.

Dr Eilir Hughes is a GP from near Nefyn. He helped set up the initiative after seeing the problems caused with patients being in hospital for too long.

"Before the pandemic, we were in a health and social care crisis I would say. And of course Covid just amplified that."

There are 14 spaces available for patients across the new rehabilitation unit.

Dr Hughes added: "We've seen our own patients in the community who have come home from hospital and we see that they could've recovered much better than they actually did.

"They have care demands and needs and often those things fall on our desks as GPs."

The care facility has a total of 14 spaces where health care professionals drop by when they're needed.

Penrhos Polish Village has a rich history as an RAF base in the Second World War, as well as a home for Polish ex-service men and women.

It's hoped it will help solve one of the greatest health and social problems Wales faces today.

If the initiative proves a success, these care facilities could be introduced across Wales.

Huw Williams is a care co-ordinator who helps to look after patients at the care facility.

Each bungalow is equipped with everything a patient might need for their stay.

Huw said: "We have a little kitchen area set up so they can make a cup of tea and basic meals. They're nice and cosy."

He added: "From a personal and professional side of things, we could've done with a similar project for my mother-in-law a few years ago."

If it is successful, the project could be rolled out across the rest of Wales.

"I'd like to think we can build on this. I'd like to think that we can have more units and there could be other projects popping up on Anglesey and other areas of Gwynedd as well. That would be fantastic."