THE health board hope to deescalate today after calling a “business continuity incident”, known as a “black alert” – one of its highest alert levels – due to demand in its emergency department.

Medical director Professor Meriel Jenny gave the latest update on the health board’s decision on the morning of November 8 saying she hopes the board will move out of the “black alert” later in the day, but the board will only do so if they know they can sustain the service.

Welsh Government has said there has been no contact with other services such as the military to assist the health board, and say they are investing in extra beds to help resolve the situation.

Yesterday at midday, Cardiff and Vale Health Board issued a “business continuity incident” after they had a large amount of patients presenting with limited bed availability at the University Hospital of Wales.

Professor Jenny revealed the health board had 135 patients in its emergency department on November 7. As of the morning of November 8, there were 45.

The alert comes as a result of “winter pressures”, with it only being the start of November.

Professor Jenny told Dot Davies on BBC Wales Breakfast the health board issued the alert because they needed to put in place a system that protected the most acutely unwell patients.

“There was a large number of patients presenting, many of them with complex needs, together with a large number of patients we needed to discharge. That left us with a negative number of beds."

The government confirmed the health board will keep the position under review and will de-escalate in line with national guidance when ready.

A spokesperson said: "This ongoing intervention is agreed at executive level within the organisation, and they will continue to update us.

"There has been no contact with other services such as the military."

CVUHB’s black alert came just a day into NHS Wales’ new campaign ‘Help Us Help You’ highlighting alternative services to help ease the strain on GPs and A&Es

While there is a big push for care in the community, Professor Jenny admitted patients must not be left at home in fear.

Barry And District News: Professor Muriel Jenny, medical director, gave an update to the BBC on November 8Professor Muriel Jenny, medical director, gave an update to the BBC on November 8 (Image: CVUHB)

On Help Us Help You, NHS chief executive Judith Paget said GPs and emergency services are “going to get busier” as we head into the colder months and wanted to “ensure” that people are getting the right treatment in the right place.

The Welsh government went on to explain what they are doing to support demand.

“We are investing in same-day emergency care and extra community beds as well as integrated solutions with social care services to improve patient flow through hospitals and tackle ambulance handover delays.”