A Guinness PRO14 club in Wales has opened up their stadium to accommodate 500 hospital beds for coronavirus patients.

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With the pandemic continuing to sweep through Britain, Welsh region Scarlets have offered a large part of its site and buildings for free to the local authority to cope with any hospital overspill in treating Covid-19. 

Following discussions with Carmarthen County Council and the Hywel Dda University Health Board, various locations at the Welsh rugby ground are being converted for use by the NHS to combat the growing health crisis. 

Currently, the ground is not needed for rugby as the Guinness PRO14 has been indefinitely suspended due to the outbreak of the virus.

Speaking on his club’s website, Scarlets general manager Jon Daniels said: “Community has always been a huge part of what the Scarlets is about and in unprecedented times like these communities stick together.

“The health service and workers are doing an incredible job in challenging circumstances and we are happy to be offering help and support in any way we can.

“We would urge everyone to follow the latest NHS advice on protecting themselves from the virus, particularly to stay at home and avoid unnecessary travel.”

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Carmarthenshire County Council is working with the health authority to put hundreds of additional beds in place in the event they will be required by the NHS over the coming weeks.

Dr Phil Kloer, medical director and deputy chief executive at Hywel Dda, said: “Delivering these additional beds for patients will be essential to help us manage patient flow over the coming weeks and we are extremely grateful for all of the support that we are receiving from our local authority partner to help make this happen.

“We have followed the situation in Italy closely to learn where possible and to help our planning. Our European colleagues have provided feedback that patient flow and throughput is a critical factor in response to Covid-19 pressures.”

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