Blood Bike Scotland volunteers helping NHS in Forth Valley

The number of shifts volunteers at a life-saving charity work have been increased to help with coronavirus pandemic.

Wednesday, 15th April 2020, 7:30 am
The number of shifts volunteers are working has increased to help with the coronavirus pandemic.
The number of shifts volunteers are working has increased to help with the coronavirus pandemic.

Blood Bikes Scotland has boosted the number of shifts its volunteers work to help run more jobs for the NHS, including supporting a quicker process for NHS staff Covid-19 testing.

Riders who volunteer at the charity, responded to 450 jobs within the last month transporting medical supplies to the NHS in Lothian, Forth Valley, Fife and the Scottish Borders.

The extra shifts have been rolled out in relation to Covid-19 related requirements.

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John Baxter, the dedicated volunteer chairman of the charity, said: “I am working harder now than before I retired but it’s great to be able to help the NHS even more at this critical time.”

Operated by over 100 volunteers, Blood Bikes Scotland’s motorcyclists deliver urgent blood samples, specimens, medication, breast milk, equipment, or documentation at short notice for the NHS in the Borders, Lothians, Forth Valley and Fife, helping patients and saving the NHS money it would otherwise have to spend on taxis and couriers.

John, who has been volunteering at the charity since 2016, said Blood Bikes Scotland are very grateful to Leith Gin and Paragon Group for supplying much sought after hand sanitiser and gloves for our bikes and riders.

Two of the additional shifts introduced in Fife are directly Covid-19 related including providing shuttle runs between a community hospital and the labs to enable people, predominantly NHS staff, to have their results back in the same day.

He said: “We’ve also added some extra shifts, at the Edinburgh children’s hospital, and similarly weekend shifts in NHS Forth Valley.

“This shows our ability to be responsive and flexible in terms of our work and demonstrates our commitment to help the NHS during this pandemic.”

The charity is appealing for donations from members of the public to allow volunteers to ramp up their services.

“Most months we do two or three collections outside the big supermarkets and other fundraising or sponsored events, but obviously this element of fundraising has had to stop completely,” John explained.

“We look to those efforts to primarily cover our running costs, which are around £3,500 every month. We have a real gap at the moment and this will have an impact on our ability to operate.

“If anyone is able to donate directly to us through Facebook or our Virgin Money Giving page on the website that would help us to continue our vital services.”

These can be found at www.bloodbikesscotland.co.uk or via Facebook.

In September last year, personal injury firm Watermans Solicitors announced a three-year sponsorship agreement to supply a car to the free-of-charge medical courier service.

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