Patient Transport Service
Patient transport is a free service available to patients who are clinically unable to make their own way to their hospital appointments (whenther for treatment, scans, consultations etc) and who do not have access to other means of travel.
Transport for a first appointment is normally made by the GP or the GP practice and transport for follow-up appointments falls on the hospital itself. However, it is also possible to arrange your own transport in certain circumstances. Normally a day's notice is required.
The type of transport would be determined by how well you are. If you are quite unwell, then it may be a proper Ambulance; if you just have some mobility or sensory problems, then you might qualify for a PTS (or Passenger Transport Service). In this case, there are sometimes 3 or 4 patients in any one vehicle (not necessarily going to the same hospital). If you are a wheelchair user, you can still travel this way.
On occassions the hospital may feel that it would be best to organise an ordinary car driven by volunteers. This may be an issue in more rural areas for example.
When booking any form of hospital transport it is very important to let them know how mobile you are; any other health problems; details of access to your accommodation (up a flight of stairs); if you have any sensory problems; do you or might you require oxygen; etc, etc, etc,etc. This would be recorded on your file and taken into account by the Ambulance crew and service manager when arranging tranpsort.
If you are not eligible for the Patient Transport Service the cost of getting to hospital can be reimbursed if you are on certain qualifying benefits like Pension Credit or Income Support. Please see our Help with Health Costs article for more information on this.
BT Buddies would like to thank Tony Murphy for his help in compiling this article.