Portland Community Transport

Monday, 20 January 2014
At 92 Gwen McDonald is active and upbeat about things, but she realises driving to Warrnambool for eye appointments is out of the question.

So the Sea View House resident has been using the Portland District Health community transport program to help get to her appointments.

The program has taken the stress out of travel for the long-time Portland resident.

"It was a real effort when I had to organise it on my own," she said.

"When you have drops in your eyes you can't drive so I had to take someone with me. Now the Community Transport volunteer can help me.

"It took a tremendous weight off my shoulders."

Mrs McDonald recently used the service for the first time since moving into Sea View House last May. "The girls who organise it are always very helpful," she said.

The community transport service drives eligible clients to medical appointments and one-off social events and is staffed by volunteers who drive a PDH car. Clients are asked to make a donation to use the service but they are able to reclaim the money through the Victorian Patient Transport Assistance Scheme.

The program is now based at Active Health Portland and people can find out more information by calling 55 221200.

Mrs McDonald says her move into Sea View House has been wonderful. She initially went to the facility for a one-week respite break but as a veterans pensioner soon found out she was eligible for a longer respite period.

At the end of the three-week stint she decided she wanted to stay. "The time was right. It was a bit of a shock at first when I had to get rid of everything from my unit but I realised I needed to come here," she said.

"It has been wonderful."

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