Monday 29 May 2017 02:59:19 AM

South Eastern Trust Receives Over £1Million Funding To Replace Vehicle Fleet
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Driving forward: Janice Clarke (Senior Manager, Patient Experience SEHSCT), Colm McKenna (Chairman SEHSCT), Edwin Poots (Health Minister), Richard Walker (Transport Manager, SEHSCT), Eamonn Molloy (Director HR & Corporate Affairs SEHSCT) & Jeff Thompson (Asst. Director Patient Experience SEHSCT)

Driving forward: Janice Clarke (Senior Manager, Patient Experience SEHSCT), Colm McKenna (Chairman SEHSCT), Edwin Poots (Health Minister), Richard Walker (Transport Manager, SEHSCT), Eamonn Molloy (Director HR & Corporate Affairs SEHSCT) & Jeff Thompson (Asst. Director Patient Experience SEHSCT)

The South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust has received funding totalling £1,371,414 to replace 53 vehicles in the fleet.

The Trust was successful in securing £1,083,347 from the European Regional Development Fund to replace 33 new vehicles with a further £288,067 received from the Department of Health, Social Services & Public Safety which enabled the replacement of a further 20 vehicles.

Speaking at the official handover of some of the vehicles to Trust representatives today, Health Minister Edwin Poots said:“I am pleased to see the official hand over of this fleet of new Clean Urban Transport vehicles, which have been purchased using both European Regional Development Funding and capital funding allocated by my Department.

“Transforming Your Care (TYC) provides a renewed impetus to reform and modernise health and social care in Northern Ireland, to ensure our services are sustainable into the future.  This will mean a significant shift from the provision of services in hospitals to provisions of services in the community where it’s safe and appropriate to do so.

“It is only right, therefore, that we do our best to provide both front line staff and service users with the necessary infrastructure to deliver a high quality, efficient and effective community service.  These new vehicles will help ensure that  the Trust can continue to deliver high quality community care, with  a fit for purpose service that offers passengers and staff a more comfortable and safe journey.”

This vehicle replacement project has meant that Transport Services now offer our passengers a more comfortable and safe journey whilst ensuring the fleet is modern and efficient and producing lower co² emissions which adhere to the Department of Regional Development’s Regional Strategy on Sustainable Transport.  All vehicles purchased are the most efficient available on the market.

The vehicles which range from buses, cars, vans, jeeps, minibuses, people carriers and tractors will be used to transport clients between home and Day Centres, and for the collection and delivery of goods and the maintenance of services around Trust sites.

The majority of journeys involve bringing clients from their homes to attend a Day/Resource Centre.  Without the input of the Transport Department using vehicles designed to meet the special requirements of its passengers, clients would not be able to access day care services.  All of the Day/Resource Centres utilise their vehicles throughout the day to bring clients to a range of educational and social activities.  During the year and particularly in the summer months, those buses not required throughout the day at the Day/Resource Centres are used to enable patients/clients in Day Care to enjoy social activities within a 35 mile radius.

The Transport Department operates a fleet of 156 vehicles, 50 of these vehicles are involved in transporting passengers who between them are expected to travel over 900,000 miles during 2013/2014. A further 70 vehicles are commercially orientated and are expected to have travelled over 500,000 miles in the same period.

The remainder of the fleet (36 vehicles) are used by our residential/children’s homes, cardiac services, GP Out of Hours and for client and social work related transport.

Eamonn Molloy, Director of Human Resource and Corporate Affairs said: “I am delighted that we secured substantial funding to replace 53 vehicles in our fleet.  The funding has meant we have been able to replace 22.2% of our entire fleet. The vehicles being replaced are between 7 and 35 years old and we are now delighted to have a new modern efficient fleet on the road for the benefit of all our patients and clients.”

The vehicles were supplied by the Donnelly Group, Daly’s Hyundai, Charles Hurst Renault, Nu – track & Charles Hurst Vauxhall.