Virgin Care and Farnham Hospital partners reignite car’s Va Va Voom

Inpatient Therapists in Surrey can continue to give extra help and support to people returning to living independently following rehabilitation at Farnham Hospital, after Virgin Care together with the hospital’s League of Friends and the local Farnham Hedgehogs charity funded a newly modified car.

The funding was put towards the costs of purchasing a specially adapted vehicle – a Peugeot Horizon – to replace the model they had used since 2000. The 17-year-old conversion, which had originally been funded by the hospital’s League of Friends many years ago, was approaching the end of its life.

OT Farnham CarFunding was made available from Virgin Care’s Feel the Difference Fund – a dedicated £100,000 a year made available for projects designed and delivered by frontline colleagues which improves the experience of using services – with more than £5,000 put towards the vehicle. Both Farnham Hospital League of Friends (£1,250) and the Farnham Hedgehogs (£3,750) kindly donated a further £5,000 between them.

The wheelchair-adapted vehicle – with a mechanical winch and wheelchair anchoring system, will be used by therapists to visit patients’ homes for assessments before they’re able to discharge from hospital.

Adaptions mean the car has more space available so it can transport wheelchairs to those that need them and carry equipment which supports the care teams’ assessment of what additional support might be needed.

Many patients are medically fit for discharge from hospital, but need additional assessments in their own homes to ensure a safe and timely discharge to readapt to living at home after illness and a hospital stay.

The new car is a like-for-like replacement for the old, safeguarding the vital resource for many more years to come.

Sarah Wardle, Virgin Care’s Managing Director for the services in Surrey, said: “The old car was a vital tool in being able to offer the best support and it had served us well for many years in helping people get back to living at home. Everyone is very pleased that this will now be able to continue for many years to come.”

George Alford, Chairman of the Friends of Farnham Hospital, said: “The Friends are delighted to have been involved once again in enabling the provision of this important service. We are most grateful to the Tindle Family Trust and the Rotary Club of Farnham for participating in the funding of the new vehicle.”

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