New Bassetlaw 'health bus' will support vaccination effort and help patients in rural areas
Vulnerable residents who live in some of the most rural and isolated parts of Bassetlaw will be able to access vital healthcare thanks to a new Health Bus.
The Bassetlaw Health Bus is designed as a mobile clinical consultation room that will be operating in the district in the coming weeks.
The vehicle was created through a partnership between Bassetlaw District Council and the Riverside Surgery in Retford.
Most recently, the Health Bus has been used to support the vaccination effort with patients who are housebound and have not been able to visit their doctors through lockdown.
As well as hosting GP surgeries, the Health Bus can accommodate health and wellbeing clinics, other more specialist clinics such as mental health, weight management, men’s and women’s health, as well as being used for Covid-19 vaccinations, childhood vaccinations, flu jabs and blood tests.
Dr Eric Kelly, chair of Bassetlaw CCG and partner at the Riverside Surgery, said: “The Bassetlaw Health Bus, or as I like to call it, Bassetlaw’s mobile GP surgery will go out to patients rather than patients come to see us.
“We can take it to supermarket car parks, rural villages, schools, anywhere and everywhere to provide healthcare and health promotion for the citizens of Bassetlaw.
"This has been particularly important throughout the latest lockdown period and as an additional way to roll out the Covid-19 vaccinations.”
Councillor Sue Shaw, cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing at Bassetlaw District Council, said: “I’m very excited about this project and it’s the perfect timing for this innovative resource. It is pure partnership in action and through the Better Care Fund, the District and County Councils are able to work together with GP practices in Bassetlaw to make a real difference to the lives of residents and enable them to provide additional care for their patients.”
Alison Johnson, practice manager at the Riverside Surgery, said: “The Health Bus provides a wonderful opportunity for the practice and other health and social care providers to extend service provision in Bassetlaw, providing health education opportunities to the community.
"This will be an asset to patients who live in more remote areas, and to patients who have mobility problems in addition to the excellent healthcare that is already provided in Bassetlaw.”