Reducing local congestion and boosting recruitment

Friday August 3, 2018

A new Green Travel Plan being launched by Western Sussex Hospitals aims to reduce traffic congestion in Chichester, Worthing and Shoreham as well as help the trust to recruit more staff to join its Outstanding-rated organisation.

The acute hospital trust, which employs nearly 10,000 people in West Sussex, is introducing new out-of-town park and ride facilities for staff and a minibus service travelling to and from St Richard’s, Worthing and Southlands hospitals.

The organisation’s Green Travel Plan also invests in improved facilities for walkers, cyclists and bikers, including CCTV security, lockers and showers. In addition, the trust is joining the easit Network, providing staff with 15% off rail travel and discounted bus fares.

Chief executive, Marianne Griffiths, said: “Our new Green Travel Plan is the accumulation of more than 18 months’ work, drawing on staff surveys, workshops and corporate best-practice to reduce the environmental impact of staff travel and the adverse effects of parking pressures on staff, our ability to recruit and, ultimately, patient experience.

“With the continued growth and demand on our services, it has become increasingly difficult to accommodate the needs of staff accessing and leaving our hospital sites. However, these improved facilities and services will remove hundreds of vehicle journeys every day into the centres of Chichester and Worthing and make it much easier for colleagues to choose alternative means of transport.”

By providing better facilities and new travel alternatives we are confident more people will choose to join our outstanding trust

The staff minibus service will run from 6.30am to 11pm, Monday to Friday, and will therefore also help reduce single occupancy car movements during the day along the congested A27 as staff travel between hospitals for different clinics, meetings and duties.

The additional cost of providing these services is being part-funded by an increase to the cost of onsite staff parking permits. The trust’s director of Estates & Facilities, David Jones, said: “We have not increased the cost of staff parking for more than 10 years but we know the staff car parks on our constrained town centre sites are over-subscribed. These changes help us to invest in alternative solutions to onsite parking which prove better for the environment and the health and wellbeing of our staff.”

Additionally, the Green Travel Plan is designed to help the trust boost recruitment and attract more people to apply and work for the CQC-rated “Outstanding” organisation.

Mr Jones added: “As we grow it becomes more difficult to recruit and retain staff if they are frustrated when travelling to and from work. However, by providing better facilities and new alternatives we are confident more people will choose to join our outstanding trust.”

For more information about Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and its latest job opportunities, please visit www.westernsussexhospitals.nhs.uk/jobs.

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Notes to editors:

  • Western Sussex Hospitals is the only CQC-rated “Outstanding” hospital trust on the south coast of England and one of only seven acute hospital trusts in the country to have received the health watchdog’s highest overall rating. (Read CQC report)
  • Western Sussex Hospitals is one the very best hospital trusts in the country to work for, according to the NHS Staff Survey, and among the top five trusts in England where employees are most likely to recommend the care their colleagues provide. (NHS Staff Survey 2017/18)
  • The Green Travel Plan includes a review of the staff parking permit scheme. While the permit costs are increasing, this is for the first time in more than 10 years and costs are being more closely aligned with staff pay bands. Part-time staff (under 30 hours per week) will receive a 30% discount on their permits.
  • As an example, a middle-grade Band 6 employee will only pay £1.43 per day to park on the trust hospital sites. This is in comparison to local council car parks where the same staff member would pay £11.20 in Chichester and £7.60 in Worthing. The new permit charges compare favourably against other trusts, with rates similar to both Portsmouth and Southampton NHS Trusts.
  • Any additional income from the increase in permit charges will support the new green travel initiatives.

 

Media contact:

Theo Cronin

Head of Communications & Engagement

01903 200111 ext.84970

theo.cronin@wsht.nhs.uk

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