KIDNEY patients are set to be transported to dialysis appointments by taxis rather than ambulance staff.
The Yorkshire Ambulance Patient Transport Services has been privatised after the trust lost the renal contract throughout the whole of South Yorkshire.
The changes set to come in next month will see patients transported in taxis rather than ‘medicars’ which unions say carry specialist equipment.
Unison branch secretary, Bryn Webster described the decision which he said would be detrimental to patients as “appalling”, Mr Webster said Unison had serious concerns about what would happen if a patient was taken ill in transit.
The contract decision was led by NHS Rotherham, but also affects kidney patients living in Thorne and District.
Nigel Parkes, senior contracts manager at NHS Rotherham, said the new service would be targeted to meet individuals’ needs.
Mr Parkes said patients did not generally need medical help during journeys but those who needed support would still be transported by ambulance staff.