Plans for a ‘booze bus’ to treat drunken revellers in Boston town centre have taken a back seat until the scheme is properly registered.
The project is the idea of Boston medic Chris Woods, who briefly got it off the ground in December with a trial run on a Friday and Saturday in the run-up to Christmas.
“We saw around 40 people over those two days,” said Mr Woods, who operated the ‘bus’ (a private address in the Market Place) with two fellow volunteer medics. “It was the busy Christmas period and there were a lot of people needing help. Some were just cold and needed a taxi, others were staggering about looking lost.”
Since then, Mr Woods has had a meeting with organisations including the NHS and police to discuss the scheme.
He now has to register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) – the independent health service regulator – and is seeking backing from East Midlands Ambulance Service.
Mr Woods said it may take up to a year to get registered, so the scheme is on hold until then. If successful, the project renamed Boston SOS Bus, will see a mobile trailer in the Market Place with volunteer medics. People would be given any necessary medical treatment and offered a hot drink and a chance to rest. Staff will then ensure they get home safety by contacting their next of kin.
Mr Woods says the scheme could help to keep less serious drink-related cases out of Pilgrim Hospital’s A&E.