New bariatric ambulance helps transport more patients around Southmead Hospital

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

A new bariatric ambulance has been unveiled at Southmead Hospital which will transport patients requiring extra support around the site.

The new bariatric ambulance will help transport patients around the hospital siteBariatric ambulances are specially-designed and equipped to support patients weighing over 159kg (25stone). The new ambulance was purchased through funding from Southmead Hospital League of Friends, and will help transport patients from the Brunel building to Elgar House. This will enable patients to begin their recovery in an environment designed for the transition from hospital to home or a care home.

The bariatric ambulance will also transport women in labour from the maternity unit to the emergency theatre in the Brunel building when required. The dual purpose ambulance will be available 24/7 and can transport all patients from Brunel to other parts of the Southmead Hospital site.

Lead Executive for Charitable Funds at North Bristol NHS Trust, Catherine Phillips said: “We are incredibly grateful to Southmead Hospital League of Friends for providing the funding for the new specially-designed ambulance.

“The bariatric ambulance will help ensure a smoother transition from hospital to home and between buildings on site for patients requiring extra support.”

The League of Friends has supported the needs of patients and staff at Southmead Hospital for over 40 years, and to date has given more than £1,140,000 in grants to the hospital.

Working independently to the hospital’s own charity, money is raised by volunteers through the League of Friends coffee shop in the Brunel atrium, with all profits from the coffee shop being reinvested in Southmead Hospital. The League also receives legacies and donations.

Southmead Hospital League of Friends

Mike Long, Joint Chairman of Southmead Hospital League of Friends, said: “This money has purchased many items of necessary equipment and assisted in staff training, all of which is to benefit the patients.

“The members are very excited that they have been able to fund a bariatric ambulance which will enable more patients including pregnant ladies to be transferred within the hospital, and from hospital to home.”

Beverley Jackson, Sales Manager at Cartwright Conversions said: “We are delighted to hand over this bariatric ambulance to North Bristol NHS Trust after working so closely with them on this project to design a vehicle that meets their requirements and those of their patients.”

For further information about Southmead Hospital League of Friends and to find out more about becoming a volunteer please call 01454 882764.