Financial Help to get to Medical Appointments?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Disability Money Matters
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WantToBeSEWantToBeSE Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Disability Money Matters
When I was on Income Support years ago as a single Mum, I could get some financial assistance if myself or my children needed to go further afield to get to hospital and other medical appointments.

Is this still possible now, even if I get Tax Credits not Income Support?

My son has some severe Mental Health problems as well as HFA (ASD/Autism).

We are travelling 170 miles to get him seen by a specialist in January, as we have an emergency appointment.
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  • If you get working tax credit, but they don't seem to pay out as much as they used to.
  • GlasweJenGlasweJen Forumite
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    If you have the White "tax credit exemption" card you can claim the cost of the cheapest method of public transport for yourself and a patient under 16 to attend an appointment.

    No card = no entitlement as the card is given to people under a certain income threshold or who claim the disabled element of working tax credits.

    If you can't travel by public transport you should contact the hospital and speak to someone from the bursars office (could be called a few different things but ask for the people who deal with travel costs). They can authorise mileage or arrange a volunteer driver to come and collect you.

    You will need to keep receipts to give into the office and they will want to see proof of your entitlement (the White card).

    If your son is over 16 they will need proof that he needed someone to attend with him. They will only pay for one chaperone and won't pay extra if you need to bring other children.
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  • pmlindyloopmlindyloo Forumite
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    Are you claiming DLA for your child? If not then you should consider making an application. The extra money is awarded for care/ mobility costs such as these.
  • Play nice :eek: Just because I am paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get me.:j
  • WantToBeSEWantToBeSE Forumite
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    Thanks Everyone. I have made an application for DLA, so am waiting on that.

    We cannot travel by public transport because of my sons anxiety, and the fact it would take us 6 hours instead of the 3.5 hours by car. The same applies to a driver to pick us up, he isnt able to handle that at the moment. Just going up there by car is a challenge for him.

    I do have that white exemption certificate, so it's good to know that it can be used for this.

    The place that he is being seen is at a MH secure unit, will they still have a place to deal with travel costs?

    I have asked his Social Worker to find out about a bursary/travel costs, but she is off work until after Christmas now, and his appointment is early Jan.

    Thanks confuseddot, that was a handy link :)
  • kingfisherbluekingfisherblue Forumite
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    Is the MH secure unit linked to a hospital? If it is, try ringing the bursar's office at the hospital.
  • GlasweJenGlasweJen Forumite
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    Yes, a mental health unit will have a travel office or someone who deals with travel costs. If you phone the number on the letter and ask to speak to the travel team someone will put you through.

    It is quite hard to get mileage paid even if the trip will take much longer on public transport, a letter from the GP might be helpful or ask if it was on the referral that your son needs a chaperone for mental health reason (up here we do it electronically via SCI gateway and GPs can be a bit "robotic" and tick "no" for things like "does patient need interpreter" or "does patient use a wheelchair", then the referral will say "thank you for seeing mr X who is Deaf and speaks through an interpreter, he is having problems relating to a hip injury sustained when he fell out of a hoist in his care home").

    Phone the unit ASAP and get the ball rolling as mileage may need signed off by someone senior and it won't be approved by turning up and going to the travel office on the day.
    Bounts, Quidco, Shop and Scan, Receipt Hog, Costco Cashback, Debit card cashback

    NOT BUYING IT
    (unless it's on offer and can get my loyalty points)

  • WantToBeSEWantToBeSE Forumite
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    Is the MH secure unit linked to a hospital? If it is, try ringing the bursar's office at the hospital.

    I dont think so, it's a secure unit, not part of a hospital building.
  • WantToBeSEWantToBeSE Forumite
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    GlasweJen wrote: »
    Yes, a mental health unit will have a travel office or someone who deals with travel costs. If you phone the number on the letter and ask to speak to the travel team someone will put you through.

    It is quite hard to get mileage paid even if the trip will take much longer on public transport, a letter from the GP might be helpful or ask if it was on the referral that your son needs a chaperone for mental health reason (up here we do it electronically via SCI gateway and GPs can be a bit "robotic" and tick "no" for things like "does patient need interpreter" or "does patient use a wheelchair", then the referral will say "thank you for seeing mr X who is Deaf and speaks through an interpreter, he is having problems relating to a hip injury sustained when he fell out of a hoist in his care home").

    Phone the unit ASAP and get the ball rolling as mileage may need signed off by someone senior and it won't be approved by turning up and going to the travel office on the day.

    Thank you :)

    It was his psych that made the referral, and she would have known that he cant get there without me. Due to his anxiety and the fact that he is only 15.
  • GlasweJenGlasweJen Forumite
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    Ah, the chaperone won't be a problem then but definitely call the unit.
    Bounts, Quidco, Shop and Scan, Receipt Hog, Costco Cashback, Debit card cashback

    NOT BUYING IT
    (unless it's on offer and can get my loyalty points)

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