A specialist clinic will be created in Wrexham to cut cancer waiting times and help early diagnosis.
The news was confirmed today by Welsh Government Health Minister Eluned Morgan and was immediately welcomed by local Members of the Senedd Ken Skates and Lesley Griffiths.
The new Rapid Diagnostic Centre at Wrexham Maelor Hospital will be one of three in north Wales and could help detect early signs of cancer before they develop further.
In response to a letter from Mr Skates, the MS for Clwyd South, the Minister said: “The introduction of RDCs is an important part of the national approach to improving cancer outcomes. RDCs provide GPs with an additional referral option when they suspect cancer, but the patient does not meet the criteria for a suspected cancer referral.”
She added: “I am pleased to confirm that one of the three RDCs being introduced in north Wales is at Ysbyty Wrexham Maelor.”
Mr Skates said: “This is excellent news for Wrexham. Rapid Diagnostic Centres are part of a national programme supporting Welsh health boards to investigate often vague symptoms that may be caused by cancer, and can provide quick reassurance, help diagnose a range of other conditions and refer people on for cancer treatment more quickly if needed.
“One in two people are diagnosed with some form of cancer. I’m delighted that Wrexham will have its own innovative centre to help increase local capacity, speed up diagnosis and reduce anxiety for patients at what will be extremely worrying times in their lives.”
Member of the Senedd for Wrexham, Lesley Griffiths, said: “The Welsh Government is committed to supporting our NHS as it begins to deal with the effects of the pandemic and this latest announcement will certainly be welcomed by Wrexham residents.
“These new clinics aim to provide diagnosis quickly for patients across the region, allowing the appropriate treatments to start sooner and offering greater clarity, certainty and support to people during a particularly overwhelming and stressful period.”
The concept of RDCs was identified by the Wales Cancer Network and previously piloted through Welsh Government funding.