Free transport service boosting mobility for patients

25 January 2016

A $15,000 donation from Canterbury League Club has gone a long way towards boosting Sir Roden & Lady Cutler Foundation’s vital patient transport service around the local Canterbury area.

The free service, called Pick Me Up, assists the elderly and people with disabilities with transport to and from hospital and critical medical appointments. This service is provided in memory of Sir Roden Cutler and his efforts to help people with mobility issues similar to those he encountered after losing his leg during World War II.

“It is a unique service that goes door to door, is flexible and importantly free to anyone who uses it. It also helps the patient re-connect with society by offering them the ability to talk and associate with others by once again being active and getting involved within their local community,” said Vince Del Zio, CEO of Sir Roden & Lady Cutler Foundation.

“People are referred to our service by hospitals, doctors, specialists, aged care workers and social care workers. All they need to do is get a referral stating the reasons for the transport and once received they are eligible for the service.”

The service receives bookings from patients living in and around Sydney including Canterbury and Bankstown areas. Since opening their doors in 2004 where they received 976 bookings, the service now gets over 8,200 bookings a year and relies on the help of 40 volunteers and drivers.

“It gives the volunteers a huge personal boost by providing them with an activity that they find fulfilling and very satisfying. They don’t just drive – they become an important part in the lives of our clients; their companion, confidant, friend and more importantly, they assist in the recovery of those whose intention it is to regain their independence and resume their place as an involved member of society,” said Vince.

“The foundation currently has eight vehicles to use in their patient transport program and Canterbury’s donation has gone towards helping pay for fuel and maintenance costs of one of them. Patients that put off visiting their doctors because it is too difficult to attend run the chance of their condition worsening and putting their health at risk,” said Dr George Peponis OAM, Chairman of Canterbury League Club.