Patients get second class service – claim

HOSPITAL patients from Whitby are being treated like second-class citizens claims a local man who has to make his own way to Scarborough for appointments.

Jim White had to drive from his home on Rosedale Close to Scarborough Hospital and then pay for parking but then discovered the man he was sat next to in the waiting room had been ferried to and from the hospital for free.

Both men were there for similar appointments but the difference was Jim lives in Whitby and the other man is from Bridlington. Jim then discovered there is a free shuttle bus that picks up residents from Bridlington, Filey and Scarborough takes them to Scarborough Hospital for their appointments and drops them back off again - but the service isn’t available for patients travelling from Whitby.

Weeks ago the Whitby Gazette also reported how elderly couple Bill and Alison Baker have to make a round trip from their home in Whitby to Scarborough Hospital which takes over six hours – just for a 10-minute check-up.

Mr White, said: “There is the bus if it turns up but the other problem is they stop the bus at night so the people that don’t drive are stuck there.

“Fortunately I do and have my own vehicle but my main worry is that if you live in Whitby it costs money for petrol and parking. If you live in Bridlington, Filey and Scarborough it is all free whether you are a visitor, in patient or out patient.

“I was sat next to a fellow, we were there for the same appointment. Bridlington is 18 miles away, Whitby is 20 miles away, Filey is only seven miles away – we are second class citizens again.

“We have a perfectly good hospital of our own. If you need an appointment to see a specialist we have to go to Scarborough - why don’t they come here?”

A spokesperson for Scarborough and North East Yorkshire NHS Healthcare Trust said: “The shuttle bus was introduced as part of the Bridlington Hospital Reconfiguration Plans. It was only ever intended to provide a service between Bridlington and Scarborough Hospitals.”