Your questions about Non-emergency patient transport put to the provider

Healthwatch in Sussex is working with the provider of non-emergency transport services to host a series of patient forums so that your questions can be answered
line drawing, clip art, ambulance, blue light at front, red cross on side

Healthwatch in Sussex has been working in collaboration with South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation (SCAS), the provider of Non-emergency transport services (NEPTS) to support a series of patient forums. 

These events have allowed users of the service and their families, as well as hospital staff, to ask questions.

Last October, an online event was held attended by 13 patients and their families. Also in attendance were representatives from SCAS, and a representative from the Clinical Commissioning Group.

A number of questions were asked, which SCAS provided answers to, or promised to look into further.

You can read the report produced after this event below.

The forum

The forum provided an opportunity to share information about SCAS, educate service users on NEPTS and any adaptations made during the coronavirus pandemic as well as the future of the contract. 

Patients asked questions about:

  • journeys made outside of Sussex and finding hospitals/clinics
  • the length of hospital appointments to facilitate the booking of transport
  • the absence of hospital liaison staff to ask questions of
  • phone numbers to call

A number of actions were taken away:

  • The GPS on the vehicles is outdated and therefore this can be problematic when traveling into London. SCAS are rolling out new devices which will have updated mapping which should support team members who are unfamiliar with the areas.
  • Patients do not always know how long their appointments are going to be, therefore most state 1 hour which is the default. SCAS explained that they will ensure their system reflect standard appointment times when these are longer. They will work with hospital departments to do this.

Other forums

Earlier this year, SCAS hosted an event for staff at a bariatric unit, where some patients use NEPTS. The event was an opportunity to raise awareness of NEPTS and the process of booking transport. SCAS hope to arrange some one-to-one sessions with patients to hear their views.

Healthwatch is working with SCAS to facilitate a forum for renal patients, many of who use NEPTS to attend their appointments. We will share details once we know when this will be.

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