Patient transport problems 'being ironed out'

PROBLEMS with the new patient transport service in Wiltshire are being ironed out, according to a report from the Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

A new contract for the service began last December and the contractor, Arriva Transport Solutions, immediately ran into difficulties.

The report says some patients faced long waiting times before being transported home from hospital, and others had to be re-admitted because no transport was available.

The new contract covers non-emergency patient transport for Wiltshire, Swindon, Bath and North East Somerset and Gloucestershire, replacing previous arrangements using several different firms.

Salisbury District Hospital had its own in-house patient transport service except for patients undergoing dialysis who were provided with transport through Portsmouth Hospitals.

The report says the teething troubles arose for many reasons including an “extremely high volume of calls”, insufficient information from the previous providers, “early winter pressures” and the need for hospital trusts to reorganise their “internal processes”.

It adds: “The combination of these issues meant that there was considerable concern at the outset of the contract.”

It says Arriva has since increased its ability to take telephone calls by 60 per cent; calls have gone down from 5,500 per week to 3,500 and they are being handled more swiftly.

The increased use of online booking has also helped, along with various other steps such as boosting carrying capacity by 15 per cent.

The new booking system should also mean patients needing to be taken home do not miss their bus or car.

The report says performance has been best at Salisbury out of the four acute hospitals in the contract area.

It concludes: “Although performance has improved, there is more to be done.”

The patient transport service is for people who require it on medical rather than cost grounds.

Comments (3)

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7:30pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Yer Tis says...

Hang on a minute or am I seriously missing the point here.

Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group COMMISSIONED Arriva Transport Solutions to operate and run the service.

So why are Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group reporting on Arriva's behalf, something smell very very odd regarding transparently and accountability here!

Should not Arriva be reporting to the Group and the Public themselves rather than the Commissioners justifying the failings or otherwise. This is not a report, this sounds as if the Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group are trying to cover a major mistake up !
Hang on a minute or am I seriously missing the point here. Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group COMMISSIONED Arriva Transport Solutions to operate and run the service. So why are Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group reporting on Arriva's behalf, something smell very very odd regarding transparently and accountability here! Should not Arriva be reporting to the Group and the Public themselves rather than the Commissioners justifying the failings or otherwise. This is not a report, this sounds as if the Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group are trying to cover a major mistake up ! Yer Tis
  • Score: 5

7:32pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Yer Tis says...

And on reflection NO COMMISSIONING GROUP should be justifying ANY INEFFECTIVE service irrespective of the reasons why.

This implies the Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is HIGHLY biased or worse!
And on reflection NO COMMISSIONING GROUP should be justifying ANY INEFFECTIVE service irrespective of the reasons why. This implies the Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is HIGHLY biased or worse! Yer Tis
  • Score: 7

8:42pm Thu 20 Mar 14

FreeBornJohn says...

Guess what, the volunteer patient transport system in place for years, that hardly ever went wrong and had prizes for service did not fit the political drive to privatise it and push it out to the private sector.

Hence Arriva arrives, no clue but they win the contract and service goes down the pan.

A friend of mine has just left the service because they could no longer stomach the commercial drive to make money. They could often help patients or go the extra mile to assist someone. Now its get them, get on, if a patient is late, move on and leave them.

Its typical and sad.
Guess what, the volunteer patient transport system in place for years, that hardly ever went wrong and had prizes for service did not fit the political drive to privatise it and push it out to the private sector. Hence Arriva arrives, no clue but they win the contract and service goes down the pan. A friend of mine has just left the service because they could no longer stomach the commercial drive to make money. They could often help patients or go the extra mile to assist someone. Now its get them, get on, if a patient is late, move on and leave them. Its typical and sad. FreeBornJohn
  • Score: 2

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