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Patients with upcoming mainland or inter-island medical appointments are being urged to book ferry tickets through their local NHS Western Isles Patient Travel Office as soon as possible.

The announcement comes amid ongoing disruption to both ferry travel and air routes.

NHS Western Isles says booking through the local Patient Travel offices will ensure those needing to travel, subject to ferry cancellations, can book foot passenger tickets and increase the likelihood of being able to book vehicles.

They add: “As we approach the spring and summer season, spaces specifically on the Sound of Harris route will be at a premium, and Patient Travel offices will be best placed to negotiate any last-minute medical bookings required for NHS appointments.”

The Lewis and Harris Patient Travel office is at the NHS Western Isles building on South Beach, Stornoway.

The Uist office is in Balivanich at the Uist and Barra Hospital.

The local Barra office is within the Comhairle headquarters in Castlebay.