Still no cash for hospital shuttle bus

Eastbourne DGH District General Hospital. January 3rd 2013 E01014Q ENGSUS00120140201135032
Eastbourne DGH District General Hospital. January 3rd 2013 E01014Q ENGSUS00120140201135032

Plans to run a shuttle bus between the Eastbourne DGH and The Conquest Hospital is seem to be no further ahead, despite a meeting between the county council and hospital trust.

East Sussex County Council cabinet member Carl Maynard, is set to look at the issue at the council’s Transport and Environment meeting on Monday.

But a report said funding had still not been found for such a service.

In November, the council rejected a motion to fund a shuttle bus due to ‘financial pressures’ the council is facing.

It said the funding should come from the East Sussex Healthcare Trust and local CCGs, who made the decision to move services between the two hospitals.

The latest report said the council met with the hospital trust on February 6, but no available funding had been identified to provide a shuttle bus.

The council report estimated a hourly shuttle bus between the hospitals would cost £250,000 per year, running seven days a week for 18 hours a day. However, this cost does not include income from charging fares.

The report also states local bus companies said a service could be ‘feasible’ but only with additional funding.

At the meeting, the lead member for Transport and Environment, Cllr Maynard, is set to make recommendations to full council on the shuttle bus issue. He is set to recommend the council works with relevant authorities to develop a sustainable shuttle bus service, stopping short at providing funding.

The report said, “Access to the new centralised primary health care provision is ultimately not a matter for East Sussex County Council.”