All six wards at Withybush Hospital in Haverfordwest which were closed due to the presence of RAAC planks last year are now open.

Six of the Pembrokeshire hospital’s 12 wards were closed last summer after a significant amount of Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC) planks were found in the hospital building.

Hywel Dda University Health Board declared an internal major incident in order to identify the scale and impact of RAAC on the site and carry out urgent survey and repair work.

As well as the six wards, areas on the ground floor and kitchen, including outpatients and clinic rooms were also closed.

Wards 7, 9 and 12 were reopened at Christmas; Ward 11 was back up and running in January while Ward 10 was re-opened earlier in April. Work came to an end on Ward 8 – the last ward to re-open - recently.

One of the services most seriously affected by the ongoing RAAC survey and repair work has been elective inpatient surgery, but with the re-opening of all wards, this will now be introduced back to the hospital.

There is however, still some extensive work to be done on the Ground Floor at Withybush including at Outpatient Departments A and B and the Physiotherapy Department which are currently in use and temporarily fully supported with props and safe to operate in.

There is likely to be disruption when these areas are closed.

RAAC will continue to be an issue at Withybush Hospital, with repair work continuing throughout this year. There is also an ongoing programme of regular survey work to monitor the condition of the RAAC, which will cause some disruption from time to time.

Director of Operations Andrew Carrurthers said: “Our staff have shown incredible teamwork and resilience during a very difficult time, so I would like to thank them for their support. Thanks also to our patients and members of the public who have been affected by the ongoing work. Some have had to be treated at alternative locations within the health board area, so my thanks to them for their patience and understanding.

“There is some way to go before Withybush hospital returns to a normal service. We will continue to engage with our staff, patients and the public and keep them informed of the latest developments.”

Further information and FAQs are available on the Hywel Dda website.