Work on a new Primary and Community Care Centre in Mountain Ash is progressing despite the challenges of COVID-19.
The purpose-built facility, which is to be named Tŷ Calon Lān, will be completed in January 2021. The building will become home to Cynon Vale Medical Centre and Rhos House Surgery, as well as a range of community services delivered by District Nurses and Health Visitors.
Despite recent challenges which have included flooding in the area and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the contractors, Jehu Project Services have managed to keep the build on schedule.
Rob James, Managing Director at Apollo Capital Projects, the developers of the new Primary Care Centre said: “The frame to the ground floor is now in place and over the next few weeks the 1st floor will be constructed and the people of Mountain Ash will begin to see what the building will look like.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic Apollo and Jehu have had to adopt new working practices to maintain progress. As a team we have also had to change suppliers and work with designers using digital platforms to ensure we can continue. Moving forward, social distancing will be a challenge as various trades start to work inside the building but the good news is that we’ve managed to overcome these challenges and maintain the programme.”
The new Mountain Ash Primary Care Centre will deliver GP services to over 11,000 patients in the area. Last week GPs from two local surgeries visited what will be their new surgery as the health centre starts to take shape. Dr Nicola Mogford from Rhos House Surgery is one of the GPs who will be moving in to the new building. She said:
“We are extremely pleased that the construction of our new building ‘Tŷ Calon Lān’ has been able to progress throughout the current pandemic. The new build will provide us with state of the art facilities to provide high quality patient care and multidisciplinary teaching, thus ensuring future sustainability for Primary Care within the heart of Mountain Ash. We would sincerely like to thank Apollo and Jehu Project Services for their unwavering commitment to the development and also to Cwm Taf Morgannwg Health Board and the Local Authority for their ongoing support.”
The 1,373 square metre site will enable a greater range of services to be delivered to patients within a community setting. As well as community led clinics such as wound care. The facilities will also provide a health education room for baby massage and breast feeding clinic, minor operations room, as well as space for enhanced health and wellbeing services. Modifications have been made to the design to enable the building to be responsive to requirements of future health needs linked to the current pandemic, such as safe areas for isolation linked to infection control.
Councillor Andrew Morgan, ward Councillor for Mountain Ash West, said: “Myself and fellow ward Councillor Wendy Treeby are very pleased that construction works on the site of the new Primary and Community Care Centre in Mountain Ash have been able to progress well, despite the challenges faced with Storm Dennis earlier this year, followed by the COVID-19 national emergency.
“I am delighted that this wonderful new health facility our town centre will also reflect the history of the town with its name Ty Calon Lan, after the famous Welsh song which of course was written by Daniel James, who once lived in Mountain Ash.
“When it is opened, the new purpose-built Primary and Community Care Centre will be available to meet the medical needs of the people of Mountain Ash, who can now clearly see the building taking shape in the town centre.
“The Council will continue to work closely with the Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board, the contractors and the developers in order to bring this much-needed facility to fruition, for the benefit of the residents of Mountain Ash and future generations.”
Sarah Bradley, Head of Primary Care at Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board added: “Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board secured funding for the project which was approved by the Welsh Government in 2017. This new facility will bring healthcare professionals together to support GPs, providing a seamless service for patients, carers and users and improving services available to the people of Mountain Ash. We’re delighted with the progress that’s being made, meaning we’re one step closer to providing an even better service for our patients in Mountain Ash.”