Health centre’s transport worries

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A HEALTH centre in Stowmarket claims a lack of public transport in the town is making it difficult for patients to attend appointments.

Paul Brown, business manager at Stowhealth, in Violet Way, said there were no public transport routes anywhere near the practice and that patients were having to hire taxis to get there.

He said: “It is a huge problem really.

“We have an issue with the parking spaces available anyway and the fact that there is no bus stop nearby puts pressure on people getting access to the practice.

“There have been council meetings looking at transport issues in the past and it had been discussed a number of times but never seems to move forward.

“The fact is there is no public transport anywhere near the practice which means too many people are driving here or are getting taxis.

“They are just not able to use public transport.

“It is definitely an issue here.

“The practice would love to get the council to help us out with it.”

At a recent patient referral group meeting, all 15 of those on the board said that public transport in the area was a huge concern.

Mr Brown said: “We did a car park survey recently and lots of patients said car parking and access were the big problems in using the practice.

“Some remember the fact there was talk of a bus service a while back and this is exactly what we need.

“Patients are telling us they want a bus service because otherwise they can not get here. If is unfair on the poor and the needy that there is no public transport in the area.”

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council said: “We are happy to receive and look at requests from people about bus stops.

“You can request a bus stop by calling 0845 606 6171 or by visiting www.suffolkonboard.com”