FRIST Concern Over Transfer Of Blood Samples

Gry Maritha

The Isles of Scilly Steamship Company says that transferring blood samples for mainland testing on the Gry Maritha has worked for the past four weeks, without complaint from the NHS.

They used to be taken by the BIH helicopter, under a special biohazard licence.

The transport action group, FRIST, has expressed concern on their website that Skybus hasn’t arranged for bloods to be transferred by air yet.

Some patients need to have samples tested urgently and because the Gry only travels three days a week, those islanders may have to visit the mainland for tests.

FRIST say they had assumed that the delay in using planes was due to red tape with the Civil Aviation Authority but Earl Attlee revealed in the House of Lords that Skybus haven’t formally applied to the CAA for a licence yet.

Skybus spokesman Jason Clark says the NHS has agreed to the cargo boat’s use for the meantime. And he says the company is training staff. That’s a requirement before a licence can be granted.

They will apply for that licence soon, he says.

FRIST is now asking islanders to contact them with their winter transport concerns so they can raise them in the Council’s transport committee on Thursday. FRIST committee member Marian Bennett is also on the transport committee.


2 Responses to FRIST Concern Over Transfer Of Blood Samples

  1. Dick Cliffe December 3, 2012 at 10:56 am

    FRIST understands that only a limited range of blood samples can be taken at present because, for certain types of diagnostic test the sample has to be tested promptly and there is not way to get the sample to the mainland quickly enough. The result has been that the patient has had to travel to the mainland to have the samples taken – at great cost and inconvenience.

    Thie issue is not so much that the Steamship Compaqny has not applied for a licence; it is that no body is coordinating and managing the islands transport issues on a day to day basis . There is limited communication with community and businesses.

    • jonnyM December 3, 2012 at 1:05 pm

      Surely this is the responsibility of the NHS?
      They’re responsible for the health of the local population, not the steamship co. What are they doing to resolve the issue?