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Government ‘urgently’ looking for organisation to take over ill-fated wheelchair service

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The Isle of Man government is looking for organisations interested in taking on a wheelchair service after the Red Cross announced it would be closing its loan service in the wake of losing a key contract.

The Red Cross’s wheelchair loan service, which provides equipment to people recovering from injuries and illnesses, will close later this year and the charity will shut its island base.

When it decided to shut its site on the Isle of Man, the Red Cross issued a statement saying that the closure followed the loss of a “significant patient transport contract” in June 2018.

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Health and Social Care Minister David Ashford told Isle of Man Today that the island will be sad to see the “valuable” service go.

He said: “Urgent efforts are being made by the department to assist other third sector organisations interested and able to take over wheelchair loan service in some form.”

Mr Ashford said that the removal of the patient transfer contract from the Red Cross was driven by “the need to ensure best use of taxpayers’ money”.

According to a report by the BBC, the Council of Voluntary Organisations (CVO) said that the closure of the loan service will “restrict the independence” of people recovering from illnesses or injuries.

It is estimated that around 120 people with limited ability use the wheelchair loan service each year.

Tags : isle of manisle of man wheelchairwheelchair loan servicewheelchair service
Joe Peskett

The author Joe Peskett

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