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Shrewsbury cabbie praised for ferrying patients to coronavirus centre

By Rob Smith | Shrewsbury | News | Published:

A Shropshire taxi driver has been praised as "the very embodiment of positivity" for giving patients a lift to a coronavirus assessment centre.

Simon Bendall with his taxi

Simon Bendall has been providing transport to the centre at Shrewsbury Town’s stadium in Oteley Road since the service began – and is now also being supported by the council’s transport fleet.

Since mid-April – in conjunction with colleagues from the Shropshire clinical commissioning group (CCG) and Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) – Shropshire Council has co-ordinated a booking line that GP surgeries can call to request transport for patients to the assessment centre.

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Stringent health and safety protocols are in place before, during, and after each journey, along with the on-site rules. This includes Simon providing all patients with personal protective equipment to wear for the duration of the journey, following strict guidelines.

Steve Davenport, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “Simon put himself forward to help provide this service and kindly adapted his vehicle to meet all infection control requirements at extremely short notice. This ensured this vital service could be put in place and start to assist those in the community with no means or access to transport, who could now be collected and taken for the appropriate assessments.

“As we can all appreciate in these circumstances often patients are very concerned but Simon remains the very embodiment of positivity and is always helping and reassuring patients with advice where he possibly can.

“Along with the CCG and SaTH, the council wants to pass on its gratitude to Simon, for his commitment and care towards his passengers in such challenging times.”

This service continues to receive requests and will carry on providing transport for those patients requiring transport as directed by the various medical practices.

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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