"I therefore support the case for retaining GP services in Plas Madoc in a more suitable building but I think it's also important that we see this in the wider context of needing greater investment in GP services and primary care, which is the first port of call for the vast majority of NHS users. I have written to BCUHB's chief executive in the hope that this is being addressed."
Community campaigners fighting to save a GP practice in one of Wales's most deprived wards have won the backing of North Wales MS Llyr Gruffydd.
He said: "While I understand the pressures faced by the practice, it is very concerning given the numbers of people affected in the Plas Madoc area that are without transport and the poor bus service that exists locally. That's in addition to the high costs involved in reaching Llangollen by bus.
"Plas Madoc is one of the most deprived wards in Wales and that inevitably leads to complex health demands. I would ask what impact assessment the GP practice and BCUHB has or will have carried out prior to making any final decision?"
Mr Gruffydd highlighted a wider problem in the Wrexham area about GP services closing or centralising.
He added: "There's a broader concern also about GP surgeries in the Wrexham area either centralising services (such as in Plas Madoc, Forge Road and Gresford) or withdrawing them altogether. This should not have come as a shock to the health board as the Royal College of General Practitioners had forecast as far back as 2015 that a third of GPs were looking to retire within five years. Plaid Cymru warned about this and it's now happening, yet the health board doesn't seem to have had a long-term workforce plan in place.
"Added together, these amount to a serious challenge to primary care services in the Wrexham area and that also has knock-on effects for other elements of NHS services such as the Emergency Department in the Maelor and pressures on ambulances.
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