Switchover to Electric Vehicles Going Well

Good progress is being made with the switch to electric vehicles as part of the NHS Forth Valley fleet. Twenty three electric vehicles were purchased in 2019/20, and around 40 vehicles are expected  to be replaced with electric equivalents over the next year.

Installation of electric vehicle (EV) charging points is also gathering pace, with the Board’s main charging hubs at Stirling Health and Care Village and Falkirk Community Hospital becoming operational in April 2021.

So far the strategy in relation to EV chargers has been to focus on the installation of larger charging hubs, rather than install dedicated charger installations for individual departments.

There are currently 16 charge points on the Falkirk Community Hospital site, with another 6 planned, 18 on the Stirling Health and Care Village site plus 14 that are for ambulance use only.

Work to finalise the charging hub installation at Forth Valley Royal Hospital is ongoing and this will add another 16 charging points.

Alongside the main charging hubs, additional charging points have been installed around the NHS estate and further charging point locations have been identified in outlying rural areas and Clackmannanshire Community Healthcare Centre. This will add a further 13 charge points across the Forth Valley area, with work ongoing to identify other areas where there is a need to boost capacity.

NHS Forth Valley Environmental Sustainability Manager, Derek Jarvie, explained: “The NHS Scotland Climate Emergency Commitments that were approved in November 2019 by NHS Board Chief Executives include a requirement for each NHS Scotland body to decarbonise its owned and leased fleet of small and medium vehicles by 2025. This means these vehicles will be replaced with an electric equivalent when the current leases expire.

“To support this transition, a new NHS Forth Valley Electric Vehicle Strategy was approved in 2020. We need people involved to be flexible and think about the small changes they can make to current ways of working – and, in particular, to plan ahead.”

Transport is currently the largest emitting sector of the UK economy, responsible for 27% of total UK greenhouse gas emissions; within this, cars are responsible for 55% of transport emissions. Air pollution, which transportation contributes towards, has direct harmful effects on the cardiovascular and respiratory health of people, with outdoor air pollution estimated to contribute to 40,000 deaths per year in the UK.