HEALTHCARE workers from Barry Hospital handed in a petition calling for the Barry Hospital Sam Davies ward to remain open, on Wednesday, October 9.

The petition, signed by 12,991 people calling for the acute rehabilitation ward to stay open, was presented to the Welsh Assembly petitions committee.

A total of 1,858 people signed the petition online and 11,133 people signed paper copies of the petition

The petition read: “We the undersigned call on the Welsh Government, being the ultimate body responsible for the provision of health care in Wales, to stop the proposal of the Cardiff & Vale UHB to close the Sam Davies ward, a 23 bedded older persons acute rehabilitation ward at the Barry Hospital, and to ensure that the Barry Hospital continues to provide Health Services to the public of Barry the largest town in Wales.”

Ward services include stroke rehabilitation, orthopaedic rehabilitation, and medical rehabilitation, other key health services and it has two respite beds.

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board want to close the acute rehabilitation ward and Unison Cymru Wales has accused it of a complete failure to properly engage with staff and the local community about its plans.

The petition presentation follows Unison’s march and rally from Barry Hospital to King Square on October 5.

The trade union said healthcare workers were energised by the support they received on the march from patients’ families and members of the public and this had reinforced determination to do everything to save the ward.

Unison Cardiff and Vale health branch chairman Stuart Egan said: “The health board must listen to Barry healthcare workers and to the 13,000 people in the local community who have signed the petition.

“This is a tremendously powerful message from Barry residents. Thank you to everyone who has supported our campaign. Let’s keep health services for those who have had strokes and respite care for dementia patients in Barry.”

l See page 5 for march and rally report