Hospital reminds patients they could claim back costs of travelling to appointments

People on certain benefits can claim back transport costs directly from the Royal Berkshire Hospital.
Photo of RBH from roundabout

Patients are being urged by the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust to check whether they are entitled to claim back the cost of travelling to hospital appointments.

The trust says many people are unaware that the NHS runs a Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme (HTCS) to ensure everyone has equal opportunity to attend appointments regardless of their income.

Who is eligible?

People may be able to claim back travel costs if they get:

  • Income Support
  • Pension Guaranteed Credit
  • Income Based Job Seekers Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit (WTC) with Child Tax Credit (CTC)
  • WTC with a disability element or a severe disability element
  • CTC but you’re not eligible for WTC
  • Certificate for Low Income - HC2 or HC3
  • Universal Credit

You could also be eligible if:

  • you are named on, or entitled to, an NHS tax credit exemption certificate

  • you don’t receive a qualifying benefit, but are on a low income, and whose savings are £16,000 or less.

What type of transport is covered?

  • Bus or train fare, and in some cases, parking and mileage
  • Taxi fares must be pre-agreed with your clinical team if they think you have a valid reason for not using public transport or a volunteer transport service

How do you claim?

  • Bring correct documentation to the cashier's office on Level 2 of the Royal Berkshire Hospital to get expenses paid that day in cash or send in a claim

Royal Berkshire Hospital leaflet on claiming

NHS webpage

Dom Hardy, the trust's chief operating officer, said: “It’s vital for patients to be able to attend hospital appointments to prevent long-term problems with their health."

The scheme does not cover travel costs to NHS GPs or dentists.

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