Cancer patients group spearheads Blackpool Vic transport directory

People relying on public transport to get to Blackpool Victoria Hospital can take advantage of a new directory, thanks to local volunteers.

The directory includes the routes and times of all bus services that go to the hospital and is available at all the GP surgeries in Lytham and Fleetwood, as well as libraries and community centres in those areas.

It was created to improve awareness of the many bus services which travel to the hospital, after concerns that a lack of understanding was causing people on the Fylde Coast to miss appointments at the hospital, in particular those referred for an initial cancer appointment.

The Patient Cancer Care Improvement (PCCI) Group, made up of people who have experienced Fylde Coast cancer services, came up with the idea for the directory and pulled together the initial content, before partnering with Blackpool Transport which provided up-to-date information and funded printing and design costs.

David Baxter, chair of the PCCI Group, said: “We were concerned at the alarming rate of initial cancer appointments being missed at Blackpool Victoria Hospital.

“While there are a number of reasons people may miss these appointments, we felt there was something we could do to put public transport information in one easy place to make things as simple as possible.

“Obviously this directory can be used by anyone, not just those attending for cancer-related appointments, so this should be of great help to lots of people on the Fylde Coast. We are very grateful to Blackpool Transport for really getting behind this piece of work and providing some vital funding.”

Sally Shaw, director of people and stakeholders at Blackpool Transport, said: “When we were approached by the PCCI Group we felt that there was a significant need for us to assist in removing potential barriers and supporting those who travel with us to their hospital appointments.

“Simplifying and condensing the information that people needed to travel was our key focus within the guide, and we were hopeful that this would help those who may not be fully confident in their journeys.

“We are fully committed to our social responsibilities throughout the Fylde Coast and are very happy to have the opportunity to get involved in an effort to decrease the number of missed appointments.”