(Left to Right): Lizzie Bramwell, Nick Chafe and Luke McCarron
Murray MacGregor – Monday 3rd August 2020 – 10.55am.
Non-emergency patients in East Cheshire have received a significant boost with the opening of a brand new non-emergency Patient Transport Service (PTS) ambulance hub.
The site in Macclesfield will house 34 West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) staff who will use 15 specialist vehicles to transfer hundreds of patients each week to appointments such as renal dialysis and oncology appointments.
This is the fifth operational hub opened by WMAS in Cheshire since the Trust took over running the contract in 2016. Across the county, 170 staff operate 105 vehicles transporting 20,000 patients each year from bases in Macclesfield, Crewe, Ellesmere Port, Warrington and Wirral.
Senior Operations Manager for the Cheshire contract, Steve Hockenhull, said: “We are now in the second year of our latest five-year contract in Cheshire and each year we are making improvements that are benefiting patients.
The operational hub in Macclesfield is great news for patients in eastern Cheshire as it allows us to maximise our efficiency which will improve the care we can provide to patients living in this part of the county.
“We undertook a significant recruitment campaign to bring the 30 staff on board and have brought in brand new vehicles. The opening of this hub is the culmination of a lot of hard work and effort but will really benefit patients.”
Non-emergency Services Operations Delivery Director for West Midlands Ambulance Service, Michelle Brotherton, added: “We are looking forward to continuing to provide a ‘Gold Standard’ PTS service for the next four years and hopefully beyond.
“We are exceeding all of the targets that we have been set by Commissioners such as prompt arrival, the speed of picking patients up after their appointment and the time spent on the vehicle.
“We would not have been able to achieve that without the amazing efforts of staff to ensure they do everything possible to look after their patients.
“With the current pandemic, we have had to change the way we operate to ensure we can provide the care needed while maintaining appropriate social distancing and the additional cleaning that is required to protect staff and patients.”
The site covers approximately 1.5 acres and has modular buildings situated on it to provide facilities for staff. It is situated in Beach Lane around a mile from Macclesfield Hospital and has excellent links to Manchester where many of the patients go.
Steve added: “It proved very challenging to identify a suitable site within Eastern Cheshire to locate the new PTS operational hub. However, after a lengthy process which started in 2019, it is extremely satisfying to finally see vehicles and staff operating from their new base.
“This hub will improve responsiveness to discharges in the eastern and northern parts of the county and will ensure a continued excellent service for renal dialysis patients in Eastern Cheshire.”