Petition to reverse the decision to privatise Sussex PTS provision

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GMB are calling for your support in requesting the CCGs protect the Sussex public and service users, by looking again at this potentially dangerous cost cutting exercise and look to return and maintain a properly funded service provision by the current NHS provider of South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAMB).

Sussex combined CCGs have outsourced all Sussex Patient Transport Services to Private Provider Coprofoma, who will be directly providing and operating the control centre for the future service, whilst choosing to offer short term sub-contracts to deliver the transport service to a number of other smaller independent private profiteering providers and voluntary services across the county.

For patients, this could mean companies may choose to utilise non-DBS checked, poorly trained staff, unsuitable and unsafe transportation options with little transparency in the accountability to both the public and patients.

This cost-cutting exercise by those charged to protect services and patients in Sussex will see service users possibly affected by either diminished services or in some cases not having access to transport in cases where life might even be at risk.

There will also no doubt be a risk from the knock-on effect on discharges, as NHS Trusts heavily depend on timely discharges especially within A&E departments to be able to do admissions and keep beds free, and may also include discharges and admissions to community hospitals and that therefore urgent care might be at risk.

The direct impact of these diminishing services will almost certainly see potential increases of 999 calls as a result of the Patient Transport Service failures and cuts, therefore diverting emergency services already facing being overstretched and under ever-increasing pressure to fill in for providers’ non-compliance, especially when that transfer may be from a more rural location, and therefore a more costly transfer service for the profiteers.