28 September 2017 - North West Ambulance Service supports patients to Stay Well This Winter North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) will be helping people to stay well this winter by sharing important health information with patients travelling on the Patient Transport Service (PTS). PTS staff will be making the most of time spent transporting patients to and from appointments by taking the opportunity to hand out leaflets about the seasonal flu vaccination. The leaflets include information about who is eligible for the free vaccination and who to speak to for further advice. Over 1.5 million patient journeys are undertaken by PTS every year, supporting patients across Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester and Cumbria, to get to and from non-emergency medical appointments. Nathan Hearn, PTS Contract Delivery Manager, said: “The nature of our service means we spend time with many different patients every day. We recognised we could make even better use of that time by helping to share important health messages and information about locally available services. “To start with, we’re giving out information about the winter flu vaccination so that our patients know all about it and where to get it. Many of the people who use our service have existing medical conditions or are over the age of 65, which means they are at greater risk of complications from flu and can have the vaccination free of charge. “The whole NHS system sees pressure over the winter months, with more people visiting A&E and being admitted to hospital. We hope that sharing health advice can help keep people well and avoid them having to go to hospital.” The initiative is part of Transforming Patient Care, a two-year programme that will see NWAS make a number of developments to services to improve care for patients. For more information about NWAS, visit www.nwas.nhs.uk or follow us on Twitter @NWAmbulance or find us on Facebook, search for nwasofficial.