HUNDREDS of journeys to healthcare appointments have been provided so far by transport projects run jointly by Worcestershire County Council and its partners.

Tenbury Transport Trust has been providing its service for many years and the future seems relatively secure, but this is not the case with two other projects.

In Tenbury the Transport Trust has both mini buses including a news bus provide by a Government Scheme but people living in other parts of Worcestershire are not so fortunate.

The Tenbury Trust also has access to a fleet of cars that are driven by volunteer drivers who are paid a mileage allowance.

In Tenbury people are able to book cars to take them on visits to friends as well as for shopping and medical appointments are GP surgeries and hospitals.

‘Scheduled’ services are also provided although they have to be booked as the buses cannot collect passengers at designated stops as with traditional services.

But the bus services under threat were introduced by the County Council and partners in Community Transport in September 2017 thanks to funding from the Government’s Total Transport initiative.

The first is ‘Transport to Health’, led by Wyre Forest Dial-a-Ride, which provides eligible residents in Wyre Forest and north Malvern Hills district to get to GP surgeries and hospital appointments.

Then ‘Connections to Health’, hosted by Droitwich Spa and Rural Council for Voluntary Service, focussing on transport for patients and visitors travelling to the Alexandra and Worcester Royal hospitals from Worcester, Redditch and the rural area in between.

The transport ensures that people who cannot travel by other means get to their healthcare appointments.

Funding for these services finished at the end of June and so representatives from the County Council and partners in health will be discussing the future of both services.

“These two pilot services have ensured hundreds of journeys could be made to vital medical appointments for those who would struggle to make them otherwise,” said Alan Amos, Worcestershire County Council Cabinet member responsible for Highways.

“We’ve worked closely with Community Transport (CT) and other partners in health to ensure this service runs smoothly since September 2017.

“We’ll continue to work together to agree a follow-up to the recommendations of the summary report .”