Patient Transport Services in Sussex: What patients and passengers told us about the service in 2020

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch East Sussex, Brighton & Hove and West Sussex report on the outcome of their research into people’s experiences of local non-emergency patient transport services.  They gathered patient’s experiences of using the service across over 30 hospitals and other locations. They made recommendations, and produced four separate reports. They collected 130 patient experiences, using a survey developed with the involvement of NHS Commissioners.

They shared the report with commissioners with a view to the results influencing how the new  contract to run the local service will be awarded in 2022. Healthwatch in Sussex agreed to prepare a joint briefing with Commissioners for city leaders and decision-makers to raise awareness of the issues. They shared results from their work at a market engagement event attended by potential bidders for the new contract in October. They have been asked to review the draft service specification; and evaluate the questions which potential bidders need to answer and fulfil.

The CCGs have already used the findings to review their draft contract specification. They are clear that patient communications need to improve. They have also strengthened some draft targets which relate to timeliness. Healthwatch is pleased to see that some of their concerns and recommendations sit at the heart of the CCGs’ set of values for the new service, with patient care and quality outcomes being at their core.

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General details

Report title 
Patient Transport Services in Sussex: What patients and passengers told us about the service in 2020
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Brighton And Hove
Healthwatch East Sussex
Healthwatch West Sussex
Date of publication 
Thursday, 7 January, 2021
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 1 January, 2020
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 31 December, 2020
Type of report 
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Quality of patient transport
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Engagement event
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Other services 
Patient transport
Non-emergency ambulance service

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Not known
Not known
Not known
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Not applicable
Does the information include staff's views? 
Not known
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Yes action has been taken or promised
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known
What type of impact was determined? 
Tangible Impact (cost related)

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.