North Devon health trust adopts freewheeler courier

Devon Freewheelers Daniel Lavery set up the charity after his wife needed a blood transfusion

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A volunteer-run medical emergency courier service has been adopted by a Devon health trust.

The Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust will use Devon Freewheelers (DFW) to transport blood, organs, drugs and breast milk for free.

The charity will provide the service between 17:00 and 07:00 each day and 24 hours at weekends and on bank holidays.

Prior to the service the trust called on emergency couriers when needed.

Premature labour

Chris Cruise, from the trust, said: "Devon Freewheelers will offer a number of potential benefits, including reducing discharge delays and ensuring important items are transported between hospitals and to patients' homes in a timely manner."

DFW was founded by Honiton man Daniel Lavery in 2008 after his wife went into premature labour and needed a blood transfusion.

It now provides an out-of-hours response service to each NHS Trust in the county responding to about 43 call-outs each week.

The charity has 46 volunteer riders, with 15 volunteers on standby each night.

The charity also has a 4x4 emergency vehicle for extreme weather conditions.

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