MEMBERS of the Blood Bikes branch who cover Gloucestershire gathered last week to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the service.
The live-saving service Severn Freewheelers, founded in 2007, is run entirely by volunteers who provide a free delivery service to hospitals and medical centres throughout the region, moving vital supplies and blood samples.
By the end of January the combined branches of the service received 31,262 calls for urgent medical supplies, covering 1,223,000 miles in the process.
The Severn Freewheelers, who also cover Herefordshire, North Wiltshire and Worcestershire, receive 300 calls each month.
Their primary objective is to reduce the funding pressures on the NHS, the service relies solely on fundraising to continue operations.
Pete Scarrott, general manager for facilities at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital: “They provide a motorbike transport service between 7pm and 7am Monday to Thursday and 7pm on Friday to 7am on Monday (providing 48 hours weekend cover).
“The Severn Freewheelers undertake non-routine tasks within this time, moving pathology blood samples, medical equipment, health records and patients medicines around the Gloucestershire health community and to patient’s homes on request.
“The trust is grateful for the professional and continuous service that is provided by Severn Freewheelers which helps us deliver health care to the people of Gloucestershire.”
Severn Freewheelers have been a real lifesaver beyond their service as a ‘blood bike’, due to the necessity of very premature babies having intolerance to anything but human milk they frequently transport frozen human milk between processing banks and hospitals.
The bikers selflessly give their free time in all winds and weathers to help save lives throughout the region.
The celebratory cake pictured above was donated to the staff at Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue, a fruit cake was shared among the patients on Gallery Ward 1.
To find out more about Severn Freewheelers visit www.severnfreewheelers.org.uk/home.aspx