During the pandemic so many of our staff and services have gone above and beyond the call of duty – but so have our volunteers! In fact, our Blood Bike volunteers responded to the pandemic by recruiting extra volunteers on extra shifts to provide extra assistance.
Blood Bikes Scotland is a registered charity that operates a free, transportation service for NHS Lothian as well as three other health boards.
Using 16 specially adapted hi-viz motorbikes and cars, their dedicated team of 120+ volunteers, deliver samples (Including Covid-19), medical equipment, baby milk and more to and from Hospitals, care homes and patient’s homes. Where the NHS would normally need to use a taxi or courier, Blood Bikes Scotland offer this service free of charge as a way of ‘giving something back’.
They also assist by undertaking long distance relays from hospitals in Lothian to anywhere in the UK – all free of cost to the NHS. In NHS Lothian they also provide a daily shuttle service, delivering urgent samples from the Sick Kids at Sciennes to the RIE labs. They have been doing this daily for over two years now.
‘We provide an efficient service that is patient focussed and a pivotal support aspect to patient care both in the hospital setting and in the community,’ said John Baxter, Chairman for Blood Bikes Scotland. ‘Although the name Blood Bikes implies we only transport blood samples, this is only one aspect of what we deliver. Blood Bikes Scotland support teams in both primary and secondary care including GPs, District Nurses, Care Homes, Hospices and Community Hospitals as well as secondary care hospitals.
‘Every penny we raise goes into the running of the charity. We are 100 per cent voluntary and 100 per cent self funded. Our volunteers provide their time and energy to run the service.’