HOSPITALS across North Wales were struggling to cope with emergency admissions last night.
The NHS issued a warning for all but the most seriously ill to try and stay away.
A whole range of illnesses, linked in many cases to exceptionally cold weather, were resulting in a shortage of beds and delays in admissions.
But Andy Scotson, spokesman for the North Wales NHS Trust, said hospitals at Bangor, Bodelwyddan and Wrexham, were all still admitting patients.
But he warned there were “exceptionally high numbers of emergency admissions”.
Patients have been arriving with a range of conditions including chest complaints, heart conditions, and infections which cause diarrhoea and vomiting.
Mr Scotson said: “The surge in demand appears to be lasting for much longer than is usually the case and is causing increasing pressure on hospitals.
“In particular it is making it much more difficult to find beds for new patients, which in turn causes results in delays in areas like A&E.
“Of course we will continue to admit patients who are seriously ill and need hospital care. However, in the first instance we would encourage people who are feeling unwell to make use of NHS Direct, on 0845 46 47, or their local GP out of hours service.
“Here they will be able to get expert advice on their condition and find out whether they would be better off treating themselves at home, rather than facing waiting to be seen in hospital.”