Lochaber Transport Advice and Bookings Service to end

The Lochaber Transport Advice and Bookings Service which was set up as a fixed-term action learning project in March 2014 under the Integrated Transport Provision Project will close on 31st December 2015.

Those who have used the services of the Lochaber Transport Advice and Bookings Service will be informed individually of the planned closure.

The Integrated Transport Provision (ITP) Project was established in response to the 2011 Audit Scotland report which highlighted opportunities for better joint working, the need for leadership and to improve transport services for health and social care between Local Authorities, NHS Boards, the Ambulance Service, Regional Transport Partnerships and the Scottish Government.

Whilst the project has been able, in part, to demonstrate that co-operative working between the organisations can deliver benefits, particularly in the healthcare sector, the decision to close the project has been based on the cost of operating the service relative to the numbers of people being assisted, and a lack of longer term finance being available to ensure the project could be operated sustainably beyond the project conclusion date of 31st December.

Additionally, strategic leadership for developing the project as a long-term operation could not be secured. However, NHS Highland and Scottish Ambulance Service are seeking funding to implement plans for in house provision which could continue to deliver some of the cost savings identified through the pilot.

Funding for the project has been through Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Transport Partnership and The Highland Council. Scottish Ambulance Service, NHS Highland and Voluntary Action Lochaber also participated significantly in the development and running of the project.

A report about the project is being prepared for the Scottish Government.

7 Dec 2015
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