AN Assembly Member has been given assurances improvements will be made to facilities at Bro Dyfi Hospital.

Montgomeryshire AM Russell George has been in talks with the Powys Teaching Health Board about when work will be taking place at the Machynlleth hospital.

In December 2017, Welsh Government Health Secretary Vaughan Gething announced a £7.8 million scheme that would see Bro Ddyfi Community Hospital become a hub for a range of health and social services.

It was part of an announcement of £68 million to provide 19 new integrated health and care centres around Wales.

The £8 million upgrade for the hospital is scheduled to be completed by April 2022, and Mr George says it is vital for the public that work is seen to be starting.

Mr George said: “During the Autumn, I met with the CEO of Powys Teaching Health Board and was given the assurance that despite technical challenges they are committed to improvement work to Bro Ddyfi Community Hospital.

“And the health board has informed me that they expect to start work on the site in 2020.​

“This scheme will be a major improvement to the facilities at the hospital but I just feel people are not going to believe that the redevelopment of Bro Ddyfi Community Hospital is going to happen until they see diggers in the ground.”

Initially it was anticipated that the work, which gained approval from Powys County Council’s planning department in March 2019, would take around a year to complete.

But this work has delayed as the building needed repairs to keep it fit for purpose.

Mr George​ added: “The changes to the timescale is frustrating.

“I’m eager to see progress on this important scheme and I will be also be raising this matter again with the Health Minister, Vaughan Gething.”

Away from Bro Dyfi, the nearest district general hospital to Machynlleth is Aberystwyth’s Ysbyty Bronglais which is 18 miles away (a 32 minute drive) while Welshpool’s Victoria Memorial Hospital is 37 miles away (almost an hour’s drive).

For specialist services, residents may travel as far as Swansea or Wrexham.