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Charles joins hospital staff to mark 70 years of the NHS

The Prince of Wales visited Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan in Ebbw Vale to celebrate the anniversary.

The Prince of Wales has visited a Welsh hospital to mark 70 years of the NHS.

Charles attended Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan in Ebbw Vale, South Wales, to celebrate the anniversary with patients and staff.

During a garden party, he recounted how he received treatment for a broken arm after falling from his horse during a game of polo.

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Charles arrives at Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan (Chris Jackson/PA)

Jessica Thomas, 33, a clinical specialist physiotherapist, spoke to the prince after offering a ride on an exercise bike.

Charles, dressed in a suit, replied: “No thank you, not today,” before chatting to the physiotherapy team.

Miss Thomas said: “He was lovely. He had broken his arm previously – he said he was caught between two horses.

“He said he had a wonderful physio. He came home with a sling and the physio told him first of all to get rid of the sling and keep moving.

“He was saying how important it is to keep everybody moving. I said, ‘absolutely, that’s the key to life’.”

She described Charles’s visit as “absolutely wonderful” and said it had provoked much excitement among staff.

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Charles meets patients sat the hospital (Chris Jackson/PA)

The 107-bed unit serves the local population of Blaenau Gwent and provides general inpatient and mental health beds as well as radiology, physiotherapy and occupational therapy.

There are a range of outpatient services including a birthing suite and minor injuries unit.

When Charles arrived at the hospital, which opened in October 2010, he was greeted by staff including mental health nurses.

He asked the group: “Did you all have your babies here?” to which they laughed and replied: “No sir, we’re all in our 50s.”

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Charles meets an ambulance crew on the fourth day of his tour of Wales (Chris Jackson/PA)

He later spoke to volunteers including retired factory worker Mike Edmunds, 73.

“He complimented my jacket,” Mr Edmunds said. “I told him it was 50p in a charity shop. He said, ‘I’ll have to get myself one of those’.”

Schoolchildren sang Happy Birthday to the NHS and also to Charles – who will turn 70 in November – as he cut a cake in the hospital.

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