A former British commanding officer and carriage-driving friend of the late Duke of Edinburgh claims he is being denied a solution to a life-threatening heart condition following the NHS’s failure to fit him with the correct pacemaker.

Colonel Hywel Davies was diagnosed as requiring a three-lead pacemaker in 2020 to replace his former two-lead pacemaker. But he claims that because NHS Wales were ‘using a covid testing procedure that was not fit for purpose’, he was  fitted with a significantly weaker one-lead pacemaker.

As a result, his circulation is being affected while the lactic acid which builds up around his muscles is unable to be cleared.  As a result, Colonel Davies is in constant pain.

“The NHS has ruined my life,” he said.

“Because I’ve been fitted with the wrong pacemaker, walking has become extremely difficult, I’m finding it difficult to drive because of the pain in my arms and I can’t do all the things I enjoy, like gardening and playing the piano.

“I’ve been told that my circulation is now in a critical state and I’ve already had to spend three weeks in Withybush where the cardiologist, Dr Bahn, managed to save my life earlier this year.

“This is extremely difficult to accept, because fitting a new pacemaker is a simple routine procedure that takes just 40 minutes to complete.”

On September 13 Colonel Davies, who has represented Great Britain alongside the late Duke of Edinburgh in carriage driving competitions, was finally given an appointment at the Glangwili Pacemaker Unit, with hopes that the problem could finally be resolved.

“The appointment was arranged for 10.22am with the team who had fitted the rogue pacemaker back in 2020, and I was assured that a doctor would be ready to discuss the problem,” continued Colonel Davies.

“When I arrived, I was given a new appointment time of 10.50am. Although pacemaker checks normally take place at Withybush, I was also asked whether I’d mind having the rogue pacemaker checked as well, to which I agreed. But I was then told that there was no consultant available to see me, despite the hundred-mile round trip."

Colonel Davies, who is a former commanding officer of The Blues and Royals who operated in Central America in specialist and dangerous areas, has decided to speak out against the NHS as a result of his disappointment at the way in which his condition has been handled.

“I don’t like complaining about the NHS, but clearly Glangwili, which was built when my father was a member of the Welsh Regional Hospital Board, is currently exemplifying all that’s bad in NHS Wales,” he said.

“I recently contacted Patient Care where the cardiac co-ordinator assured me that he’d deal with my condition when he returned from his holiday no later than October 4. But I'm still waiting to hear from him.

“I’ve also been told that I may get a telephone consultation with another doctor at the end of November, but I’ve similarly been told that this might be cancelled at short notice.

“The sadness is that there doesn’t appear to be any wish to serve those in need, and the NHS Wales appears to be on the point of collapse.”

NHS Wales has been asked to respond to Colonel Hywel Davies' comments.