ECT Charity is delighted to announce that we have won Partnership of the Year at this year’s Community Transport Awards. The award comes for our PlusBus for Health service, delivered in a long-standing partnership with North West London ICB.
The Partnership of the Year award aims to recognise organisations working in collaboration for the benefit of their communities – working together to solve a problem, using their different skill sets to reach their communities where they wouldn’t have been able to do so individually.
PlusBus for Health provides accessible transport for vulnerable patients in the London Borough of Ealing, taking them from their homes to GP surgeries for their appointment and returning them safely home afterwards.
The partnership has broad-reaching aims, but it began from a simple shared understanding – you can have the highest possible standard of healthcare, but this means nothing if patients cannot access it. Vulnerable people often avoid visiting their GP because they are not able to walk, can’t use public transport or don’t want to pay for a taxi. These issues mean healthcare postponed or foregone for patients, leading to significantly worse health outcomes. Missed appointments or home visits by surgery staff are also a real economic cost for the NHS.
“We’re very proud of our PlusBus for Health partnership and are delighted it has been recognised with a high-profile award” said John Chesters, ECT Charity Chief Executive. “By coming together in partnership, the PlusBus for Health service is taking down barriers to access, saving the NHS vital resources and even helping to tackle loneliness and social isolation through introducing patients to the wider PlusBus network in Ealing.
“The award is also a testament to the commitment and hard work of everyone involved – our depot team, colleagues at North West London ICB – and staff at NHS surgeries across Ealing who all pull together to improve outcomes for residents.”
Neha Unadkat, Borough Director – Ealing at NHS North West London said “We believe in the power of partnership to improve outcomes for patients. By making Community Transport a direct part of the healthcare offer, we’ve developed an innovative approach to tackling healthcare inequalities and improving access. We are pleased that this approach has been celebrated by the Community Transport movement.”
You can find out more about PlusBus for Health here