21/03/2017 BBC Wales Today


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Welcome to Wales Today. Our headlines tonight:


Helen Jones' husband Alun waited a fortnight for an angiogram


Why are patients in some parts of the country


The nurse said to us, there might be a slight delay,


We waited 16 days for him to be transferred.


Mike Boyle has Cystic Fibrosis, they're simplyfying how you access


expensive treatments, will it really benefit


I know there's something, it's within my grasp,


within my reach, and I'm being denied that at the moment.


What we want? 0%. When we wanted? Now!


Angry homeowners tell politicians to scrap the rules regulating


Ten years years ago, people were moved out of their homes


for a road that never came, now it's back to square one.


And we'll be finding out how a project looking at wildlife


on this river could change how we manage our waterways


There's concern tonight that heart attack patients in Mid


and West Wales are waiting weeks for a specialist cardiac procedure,


because there is no provision within the Hywel Dda


Cardiac patient Alun Jones from Ceredigion waited over


a fortnight for an angiogram in Morriston Hospital in Swansea,


although official guidance recommends having the procedure


Mr Jones' wife contacted us with her concerns and has been


speaking to our reporter Aled Scourfield.


It should be a time of celebration for Helen Jones as she marks her


26th wedding anniversary with her husband Alun.


But the past few weeks have been incredibly stressful


Alun suffered a heart attack on St David's Day and was admitted


She contacted Wales Today about his experiences.


He was admitted to the cardiology ward and was advised that he needed


to be seen at Morriston for an angiogram within threedays.


The nurse said to us there might be a slight delay,


We waited 16 days for him to be transferred.


A coronary angiogram is a specialist x-ray that detects blockages


All patients from the Hywel Dda health board area have to travel


to Morriston Hospital for the procedure, which is in


the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board area.


For some, that can mean a journey of over 70 miles.


The National Institutes of Health and Care Excellence, NICE,


suggest that patients who suffer a heart attack like Alun should


Helen has nothing but praise for the care her husband


received at Glangwili, and he's recovering well.


She says that patients from Mid and West Wales are waiting


If somebody presents with heart or chest pains,


If you present at Morriston with chest pains, you're likely,


very likely, I think they're hitting their targets very well,


to be seen within the 72 hours and have this intervention.


It's not a question of money. It's a question of lives.


The Swansea Health Board denies prioritising


This is where cardiac catheterisation, or angiograms,


can be performed at specialist centres around Wales at the moment.


None in Mid and West Wales, and just one in the North.


The Royal College of Physicians said in a report in 2014 that the lack


of a cardiac catheterisation lab to perform angiograms


in the Hywel Dda health board area was a clinical risk.


Three years later, there's still no facility at Glangwili to cover


a rural population of over 370,000 people that includes


the counties of Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion.


I know of many examples, Mr Jones is one of them.


And others have had to wait for excessive amounts of time,


weeks on end, for transfer to Morriston for treatment.


They are clinically and say, that is what clinicians are saying,


and there is a need to increase capacity, certainly,


I asked for an interview with the Chief Executive


of the health board, but I was told he wasn't available.


In a statement, Steve Moore apologised for


He said it was the health board's priority to make sure patients


were treated quickly, and work closely with


However, he did admit that the current situation needs


to improve, and there are plans for a new catheterisation


lab here at Glangwili, which will mean fewer patients


The Welsh government has told me it's awaiting that business case.


Helen Jones says the development is well overdue for patients


like her husband that have had to travel long distances and wait


for a cardiac procedure that can provide vital information


Staying with cardiac care, almost three thousand people who've


had certain types of open heart surgery at the University Hospital


of Wales in Cardiff since 2013 have been told they may have been


So far, three cases of Mycobacterium chimaera have been


identified in Wales, which is linked to the use


of a device to regulate blood temperature.


28 cases have been identified across the UK.


Patients who need treatment that isn't available on the NHS


because its deemed too expensive can find the process of applying


Today, that system has been simplified.


But a leading charity says the changes don't go far enough,


and an opportunity to end a "postcode lottery"


Here's our health correspondent Owain Clarke.


It's not a life jacket, but it does help him live.


Mike Boyle from Cardiff has cystic fibrosis,


a genetic illness that clogs up his lungs.


But the vibrations from the jacket help clear the mucus,


meaning every breath is a little bit less of a struggle.


I do it twice a day, and it's for two minute cycles.


My parents were told I probably wouldn't see my tenth birthday.


Through medical advances and things like that, really,


These are the medicines that have helped Mike defy the odds.


He takes 55 tablets each day, but with his health getting worse,


doctors told him about a new pill they thought could help.


But he needed to make a special request to try to get his


quite confident that this would come around.


So then when you're told as a patient, no, it's been refused,


and on the grounds it's been refused, it's quite some destroying.


Around 700 patients with a range of doses


made similar requests last year for treatments that


haven't been given the green light as cost-effective for NHS use.


One of the main complaint about the system is,


to be successful, a patient has to prove they're an exceptional case.


But Health Secretary, on the advice of an independent panel,


Instead, a decision will be based on whether or not there will be


But experts still need to be convinced that its value for money.


I hope the process will be much easier to understand.


The new definition of clinical benefit for the individual should be


much clearer both for the patient but also the clinician as well.


And also be much more upfront about the fact


it as to deliver reasonable value. The NHS is not a finite resource...


For years, there have also been complete about health boards making


different decisions to each other, leading to what some described


Some want to see a single group established to make


That won't happen, but the various panels will be


Some argue this is a missed opportunity.


It's significantly more difficult to get seven


We are only a population of 3 million.


There are not a huge number of applications all the time.


Those people on those panels could become experts.


One line can have a look at the patients complaining.


If one says in West Wales they have had a decision


and they have a similar type of cancer, that is going


Hundreds of new treatments and drugs develop each year.


Back in Cardiff, Mike is well aware the NHS can't pay for them all.


But now, needing a lung and kidney transplant,


he feels he has personally been denied a chance.


It's just something I could swallow, and it could increase my lung


function, help me live longer and improve my life.


But that one tablet, you know, costs over ?100,000


per patient per year. I know.


I know it is something within my grasp, within my reach,


and I'm being denied that at the moment.


The changes which come into force in September won't necessarily mean


And it's hoped a similar system also be fairer.


A Gwent police officer has told an inquest he forgot


to switch-on a body camera, which could have recorded the scene


where a man attacked and killed Cerys Yemm in 2014.


PC Sion Jenkins was one of five officers who tried


to restrain Matthew Williams following the attack


Williams was tasered by police and later died.


Police searching for an 11 year old girl who went missing


from her home in Llanddulas overnight has been found safe


North Wales Police has thanked everyone involved


Earlier this month, Plaid Cymru's Neil McEvoy was suspended


as a local councillor, after a tribunal ruled,


he made a 'bullying' remark to an official.


He's also an assembly member, and was suspended from the party's


But, today he was reinstated into the Assembly group


following his apology for any distress caused.


Our correspondent Daniel Davies has been following the story.


Dan, is there now peace in Plaid Cymru?


There is certainly a feeling that this issue has taken up enough time


and energy, and they would rather move on. Whether they will be able


to do that, I don't know, given that Plaid Cymru is holding another


investigation into it to look at other complaint against him. This


stems from another suspension he is serving in his other role as Cardiff


Council member. He said he wanted to restructure the council. That remark


was heard by an officer, who told a tribunal she felt threatened in her


job, and the adjudication panel came to the conclusion that his comments


amounted to bullying behaviour. The party wanted him to apologise. He


wants to appeal. And in the meantime for the last two weeks, he has been


an independent member of the assembly, until today, when they


agreed on the statement in which he says that his comment was not


directed at the council officer, but acknowledged that she has said that


the comet caused distress, and for that he apologises. From Neil


McEvoy, to Donald Trump. Today the Welsh government's top law officer


has issued a statement saying there have been increasing attacks on the


independence of the judiciary at home and abroad. And although he


doesn't name Neil McEvoy, he does draw attention to a phrase that


Vista McEvoy has used about the tribunal that ruled against him, a


kangaroo court. According to the Council General of Wales, that


language undermines the fundamental principles of the rule of law that


underpinned the democratic system of government and administration of


justice. People living near Aston Hill,


close to Queensferry, in north east Wales say


they are ready to oppose new plans to widen a major road there,


nine years after a similar They say they'll support


an alternative route. The A 494 links the motorway network


in England with north Wales. Here we go again, the first stage


of a Welsh government consultation, This is a battle


they thought they'd won. This has been going


on for over 20 years. It was on, then it was off,


then it was back on, Eight years ago, there was a public


enquiry into quietening It doesn't seem to be a significant


amount of difference in what they were stating


when we won the public We have reformed a group and been


looking very carefully at the different options,


and we are ready for another The road at rush-hour -


bottlenecks happen when it feeds into the A55, which runs


the length of the North Wales coast to Holyhead.


So why does this matter? This is the single most important


road for the North Wales economy. It connects the region


to the north-west of England, there are 8 million people,


and two International airports We have been here before,


they've been looking for a solution to Deeside's traffic problems


for 30 years. These homes were compulsorily


purchased to allow A plan that was scrapped


after the enquiry. Now, new homes are being built


there, but this time On this map, the Aston Hill


route is coloured blue, it runs through Queensferry


to the A55. The alternative red route would take


traffic over the River Dee, connecting through countryside


to the A55. They like me Flincher Bridge plan,


people living near it would be less impressed.


What about business? Ashka Cabani chairs a business form


that represents 1000 businesses employing 25,000 people.


He is backing the blue route. It looks right to me.


It looks right for most businesses. Why change something


that we already have a plan for? Ten years ago, they


were going to do this. So just continue, bite


the bullet and go for it, and build the motorway we deed


so desperately for North Wales. And this is just the


start of the process. Restoring our rivers,


how a massive survey could change how we look after the country's


watercourses, and how the Somali community


here is raising money to try to help the victims


of drought-striken Africa. "Absolutely diabolical",


that's how some park home residents have described the rules relating


to the sale of their properties. Campaigners believe


it's unfair that anyone buying the bungalow-style mobile homes


is required to pay up to They were protesting


outside the Senedd to lobby the Welsh Government


to change the rules. Here's our political


reporter James Williams. Getting ready for the fight. Around


15 months ago, this man and his wife moved from the Bristol area to


Wales. They paid ?75,000 for their Park home. 7500 of which, 10%, was


paid directly to the site owner. The actual 10% we paid to the park owner


was never brought up until we had actually exchanged contracts. It


came as a bit of a shock. It has led Royston to join others in protesting


the up to 10% commission the buyer pays to the site owner. Despite them


not being involved in the selling process. We feel it is diabolical in


this day and age. We feel that it is very, very unfair, and somebody has


got to stand up and be counted. And that's what we're all about. We are


the ones standing up and being counted. This morning, they took


their protest to the steps of government. Almost 100 lobbied


ministers in Cardiff. It is in the Welsh governor's gift to change


commission rules. Today, they have announced a public consultation into


the issue. The minister says he is currently the view that there may be


a case to reduce or even abolish the commission. However, this former


Liberal Democrat Minister passed a law in 2013, he decided against


including a change in the commission rate. I think the whole economics of


Park homes are bizarre because you buy the site, but you still pay a


pitch fee, and you still have to give a commission. The whole thing


is bizarre, but it has been established like that for decades.


To try to unravel that starts to get very compensated. But for these


protest is and the around 5000 Park home residents in Wales it's a


simple question of fairness. Our rivers and waterways


are a much loved part of the Welsh landscape,


but in some areas, fish stocks and other wildlife has declined


because of poor water quality. Now, a new project has been


launched to return rivers Our environment correspondent


Steffan Messenger is on the banks What's this


project all about? We are at the end of the River story


at Cardiff Marina where the river flows into the sea. Water quality


further up the catchment has been deemed poor, even bad in places by


natural resources Wales. Now a huge survey of this river from top to


bottom has given us a unique insight into the challenges it faces and


what needs to happen now. A fine day for litter picking.


Volunteers joined forces with a host of different organisations at the


start of a new campaign to restore our rivers. I think it definitely


has the be the way forward for everyone to work together with the


local community, get that pride and awareness back up of the value of


our rivers. This is the first of a number of clean ups along this river


this spring. The hope is to involve local people and schools as well as


specialists in dealing with different types of pollution. The


river flows for around 24 miles from Cardiff into the bay. But the water


quality is so bad in parts that local anglers complained to the


council, claiming the river was basically dead. After an enquiry by


the council's environment committee, a number of different organisations


came on board and a thorough survey was carried out from top to bottom.


The first of its kind on a river in Wales. We found hundreds of major


tipping incidents, and also sewage outfall. There are also unscrupulous


builders who deliberately mis-connect showers, granny flats,


directly into the storm drain. That all adds together to kill a river


off. Wells water are now involved in responding to the survey's findings.


We've got 7000 comet is of rivers in Wales, and actually, we can't


understand everything that is going on in all of them. This survey will


help us to understand where we have missed connections. After two hours


of litter picking, the team of volunteers feel around 20 barracks,


and then there is all this rubbish as well. Things that can't be was


cycled. A programme of work to tackle the problem is now being


prepared. This project could set a precedent for restoring other rivers


across Wales. And the findings of that survey,


mapping pollution along the river Ely will soon be available


as an online resource. It'll also show areas where fallen


trees and invasive species like japanese knotweed


could be causing problems. The hope then is that restoration


work can be properly targeted, and the River Ely can


in time will become a haven for fish and other wildlife


and an amenity the local community Hundreds of members of the Somali


community here have been taking part in fundraising events to raise money


for drought-stricken families and relatives living


in the Horn of Africa. Cardiff has one of the the largest


Somali communities in the UK, and people here have already raised


thousands of pounds. Shocking images like this have


sparked an international charitable response in the last few weeks. In


parts of Somalia, they've had three years without rain. The last famine


here in 2011 claimed the lives of 250,000 people. It makes a big


difference, you know. A world away in Wales a year without Wales is


hard -- without rain is hard to imagine. They are doing everything


they can to help. They have arranged football and family fun days in this


part of Cardiff where second and third generations still have strong


family ties in that region of Africa. Most of my family are from


the rural area of Somali land, an area too far from any City, from any


area where you can get basic supplies from, and the stories that


I have heard are dire, people left with nothing. There is a large


population here, and we have a big connection to the communities. They


are appealing for help and support. With food and rain in abundance in


Cardiff, the Somali community here recognise just how fortunate they


are to be living in Wales, but they're determined to help family in


drought stricken areas. This family fun day and other weekends have


already raised nearly ?6,000. A few family members we have been able to


speak to have all said about how devastating it is and how it is not


getting better because it hasn't rained. I can see the suffering


around, therefore they want us from the West to rally around them and


basically send as much money as possible. Obviously, there is no


funding, because Somali land is not recognised as a country. I have


sisters hurting, even though we are all the way in Wales, in Cardiff, we


hurt as bad as they are. We do as much as we can. Getting clean


drinking water is the best way to stave off disease. Aid is being


planned for next week. Meanwhile the funding continues. A


charity football match between a Somali team and members of the


Bangladeshi community kicks off at 8pm. The score is irrelevant, their


only goal is to raise as much cash as possible for a drought stricken


part of Africa. following the alleged bite


on George North during Wales' defeat Six Nations officials have been


unable to find any television BBC Wales understands


the Welsh Rugby Union's plan to take over the Newport Gwent Dragons


and Rodney Parade Stadium The WRU already owns


a 50% stake in the Dragons. The region has been looking


for investment for nearly a year. But if the deal is to happen it


will need to be supported by three quarters of


Newport RFC shareholders. Let's see what the weather


has in store, Derek's Sunshine and heavy showers today,


snow in the mountains. Parts of the North are dry, bright and sunny.


This evening and tonight, more showers, and also heavy rain. Sleet


and snow, too. Snow, 300-400 metres, a few centimetres likely on some of


the higher level roads. Dry in the west later in the night. This is the


picture for 8pm tomorrow morning. Cloudy in the north, some rain, some


heavy, extending into the North East to Wrexham. Eastern Powys and


Monmouthshire with showers. The south-west dry and brighter with


sunshine. During the day, further outbreaks of rain in the north, wet


weather, wintry on high ground. Further south, showers with dry


weather and sunshine in the afternoon. Temperatures again on the


cold side, the wind lighter ban today. Tomorrow, cold and wet, six


Celsius in Holly welcomer dry and bright in Swansea tomorrow. Sunshine


as well. Rain will clear, showers dying away leaving a dry night with


mist and frost in places. Thursday, dry with showers, especially in the


north and east, the best sunshine in the South west. The north-easterly


wind will make it feel chilly. Dry and bright elsewhere, looking


promising for the weekend. Dry, sunshine and warm.


Northern Ireland's former Deputy First Minister,


Martin McGuinness, has died at the 66.


He was a senior commander in the IRA, which


in the 1970;s and eighties - was at the forefront of a terror


But he later played an important role as a Sinn Fein negotiator


And there's concern that heart attack patients living in mid


and west wales are waiting longer than they should for angiograms.


Helen Jones from Ceredigion got in touch when her husband waited


over a fortnight for the test that should be available within 72 hours.


Hywel Dda Health board has apologised.


If you - like Helen - have a story you want


us to investigate - you can email us


[email protected] - i'll be back at 8 and again


after the News at 10 - That's Wales Today -


thank you for watching - from all of us on the


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