A WARD for elderly patients may be closing at Barry Hospital, with patients and staff being transferred to Llandough or Cardiff.

Barry Hospital's 24-bed Neale and Kent Ward may be closed with the service going to Llandough Hospital and St David's Hospital, Cardiff.

Dr Richard Evans, director of the Clinical Board for Medicine at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, said that the Barry ward was one of two specialist elderly care wards being discussed for relocation.

The plans are part of an overhaul of elderly services across Cardiff and the Vale.

“Key to this is changing the way we provide these services to be more integrated and provided on fewer disparate hospital sites," said Dr Evans.

“We have started discussing these proposals with the Community Health Council and the staff potentially affected and the response so far has been largely positive.

"Now that these initial discussions have started we will engage more widely with patients, families, staff and other key community stakeholders about these proposals so that everyone is fully involved.”

Contrary to these positive reactions, one relative of a patient on the ward said that she was disappointed in the plans, as were numerous staff members she has spoken to.

The woman, who wished to remain anonymous said: "I was told that the ward was shutting by May 31. It's a bit of a shock."

She added that in her opinion that the general consensus among patients and family members was disgust at prospect of the service being removed from Barry.

"The older generation, friends and family, can visit Barry Hospital easily. Many of them won't be able to get to Llandough," she said.