CEREDIGION residents have been urged to do battle if there is any threat to downgrade Bronglais Hospital and remove its A&E department.

The Cambrian News reported “There has been a growing backlash against options which were leaked last week that suggested Bronglais should become a rural hospital and that the A&E department could be replaced by a minor injuries unit.

Local campaigners and politicians have said they would oppose any proposal that threatened Bronglais.

Former MP Mark Williams said: “Personalities at the health board may come and go and ministers in the Cynylliad also, but the validity of our arguments, as residents of Ceredigion, as patients, as recipients of an excellent service by excellent staff, must one again prevail, and Bronglais be retained as a district general hospital.

“A previous chief executive of the health board used to regularly share with me his vision of health care locally; a downgraded Bronglais, a centralised super hospital in Carmarthen, and our county, a virtual ward.

“I was told that that vision worked in Greater Manchester (which it did not) and should work in rural west Wales.

“Once again, we must ask whether the theorists and strategists have any comprehension of the transport, service accessibility challenges in west Wales.

“We have won that battle against the vision twice before and I sincerely hope that we will not have to fight it again.”

Dinah Mulholland, the Ceredigion Labour party’s parliamentary candidate in the last election, said: “There is a national demonstration in London on Saturday, 3 February, with buses and coaches going from Ceredigion.

“I would urge everyone who can to join the thousands and thousands of us marching to save our greatest national asset and show this government that we have had enough of our NHS being decimated” here.