AMMANFORD town councillors have again expressed concerns at the downgrading of Prince Philip Hospital’s A & E department which they fear will affect ambulance response times in the Amman Valley.

There are fears that the hospital might not survive if further services are downgraded or relocated.

Hywel Dda Health Board said the future of the hospital as a major health care provider was secure.

Cllr Wendy Evans, who attended a recent consultation meeting in Carmarthen, said: “My concern is how quickly will ambulances heading to Glangwili turn around?

“If they can’t hit those response times of eight minutes then someone having a heart attack here in Ammanford does not stand a chance. People from our area will, in effect, be passing their own hospital on the way to Glangwili to have treatment – I would like things to keep going at Prince Philip as they are.”

Cllr Irena Hopkins said while theA& E department at Glangwili was “superb”, it was a shame the facility at Llanelli was going to go. “It’s a dire situation – quite frightening really,” she added.

But county councillor Colin Evans pointed out Prince Philip’sA&Edepartment had already gone. “Morriston and Glangwili are centres of excellence and that is the way forward,”

he said.

“Do we seriously think money is going to be diverted from Glangwili to re-open an A & E department that was downgraded two years ago? It just ain’t going to happen.”