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Help with travel costs

Help with costs travelling to and from hospital

If you are on any of the benefits listed below then we can help you with your travel expenses to and from the hospital for your appointments.

Benefits accepted

  • Income Support
  • Income Support Based Employment and Support Allowance (E.S.A)
  • Income Based Job Seekers Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Pension Guarantee Credit
  • HC2 or HC3 form

To reclaim your travel expenses you must produce a letter from the benefits office dated within the last 12 months stating that you are in receipt of that benefit, we can also accept a valid tax credit card, if you have one. You will also be required to show evidence of your appointment, please bring with you your appointment letter, as we will need to verify the attendance and we may not be able to make payments without this.

Benefits we CAN NOT accept

  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Incapacity Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Housing Benefits/Council Tax
  • Free School Dinner entitlement letters
  • Maternity/Prescription Exemption Cards
  • Bank Statements

What you are entitled to claim back

Private mileage and car parking - This is calculated by used Google Maps. We use the home postcode that you are registered at and the hospital’s postcode, we then calculate the lowest mileage between the two and you will receive 15p per mile. You will receive a cash payment for a return journey based on the patient’s details. If you can produce your car parking ticket we will reimburse £3 for your parking. If you take your car parking ticket to the customer service desk at the car park or the Reception desk located at the hospital’s main entrance they, on production of your appointment card/letter will swap your ticket so you may exit the car park for £3.

Car Engine Size – You may be entitled to a higher rate of pay depending on your engine size. In order to claim this, you must present your vehicle registration document in order to qualify for the higher rate if applicable otherwise they will be reimbursed at the rate of 15p per mile.

Park and Ride – We can reimburse you for your bus fare if you produce your tickets. We can only pay for the patient who has the appointment.

Bus/Train Tickets - We will reimburse you for your bus and/or train fare if you show us you tickets. We can only pay for the patient who has the appointment.

Voluntary Drivers – If you have travelled to you appointment with a Hospital Voluntary Driver, you will need to produce a receipt from the driver, we calculate the mileage in the same way as private car drivers, from the patient’s postcode to the hospital post code (not from the drivers postcode) we pay a higher rate than that for patients driving their own car’s but the voluntary drivers may charge  a different rate, which may require you to make up the difference to what we can pay the voluntary driver.

Taxi – We do not pay for taxi travel unless there are exceptional circumstances where there has been absolutely no other form of transport available. In these cases we may not be able to make instant payments at the desk as a senior staff member will be required to authorise it. Please contact the Outpatient’s Travel Claims Desk on 01223 216357 before choosing this mode of transport.

Things to remember

Please remember that we are here to help with your travel expenses, all mileage is calculated in the same way.

We are unable to reimburse petrol station receipts.

You may reclaim your travel costs from us in person for your appointments – we can only pay backdated claims to a maximum of 6 weeks.  If you have any claims that are outside of these 6 weeks an HC5 form would need to be completed (obtained from Outpatient’s Reception) and posted together with any travel receipts to the address given in the form. You may make a postal claim up to three months after your appointment has taken place, or longer in exceptional circumstances.

If you have not brought with you your proof of benefits or cannot prove that you have had an appointment with us then we will not be able to pay any money out.  Under these circumstances you can complete an HC5 form (as above).

Escorts If someone is required to attend your appointment with you for medical purposes you will need to get an escort form signed by a consultant or senior nurse. Unfortunately, without this we cannot pay for anyone else’s travel.

Visiting an inpatient? You cannot claim help with travel costs, if you are visiting someone in hospital. However, visitors in receipt of one of the qualifying benefits may be able to receive assistance in the form of a Social Fund payment. Further information about this assistance can be obtained from Jobcentre Plus offices.

A&E Patients You are entitled to claim if you have had to attend A&E for a condition that you are already being treated for in our Outpatients department, but this has to be for a pre-existing condition. If you have had to attend A&E for any other reason then you are not eligible to claim.

Patient Transport You may be entitled to patient transport, please speak to your consultant/team/senior nurse.

Please note that all information in this leaflet has been taken from the Department of Health guidelines.

What to do with the form

The form should be presented to the healthcare travel scheme desk in the outpatients department 

Further Queries

Outpatient’s healthcare travel scheme desk – 01223 216 357

 

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