Patients and visitors
We understand that getting to hospital can be difficult for some people. In line with Department of Health guidelines, we provide a non-emergency transport service for patients whose clinical condition or mobility makes it difficult or impossible for them to attend hospital without our assistance.
If you feel you require support getting to and from hospital, call our transport assessment team on 020 3311 5353 (Monday to Friday, 09.00 to 17.00). If you are unable to call, a friend, relative, carer or representative can call on your behalf.
One of our trained assessors will assess your needs by conducting a short and confidential telephone interview. They will ask questions about your medical condition and your mobility.
If you need to attend hospital on a regular basis you will be assessed for transport for the entire course of your treatment. We will then set a date to reassess your transport needs; this will usually take place between four weeks and three months of your original assessment.
What happens after I have been assessed?
If your request for hospital transport has been approved, we will book your transport for you. Your return journey home will be booked as well.
The day before your hospital appointment a member of the transport team will contact you to make sure:
- You are still attending your appointment
- You still need hospital transport
- The correct type of vehicle has been requested to suit your needs
- We have the correct address
Please note that if your appointment is on a Monday, you will be contacted on a Friday.
When will I be collected?
You will be told the approximate pick up time the day before your appointment. Please be ready when your transport arrives; our drivers cannot wait more than 10 minutes.
Pick up times vary, and are dependent on where you live. Journeys are planned to make the most effective use of our resources. This means other patients may be collected en route to the hospital. When you arrive at the hospital you will be taken to the clinic or department you are visiting.
Can a friend or relative accompany me on the journey?
We use Department of Health guidelines to decide whether you require an escort. If you meet the criteria then an escort can accompany you to and from the hospital.
After your appointment please go to the patient transport lounge and report to the transport reception desk. If you need help to get to the lounge, please ask a member of staff in the clinic to arrange for a porter to take you there.
The transport department does its best to make sure that patients have the shortest wait possible. However, you should be prepared to wait up to 60 minutes for your return journey.
If you need to leave the lounge while you are waiting for your transport please inform a member of staff so they know where you are.
Following a longer stay in hospital, transport will be arranged by the ward staff who will assess you when you’re ready to be discharged.
If your appointment has been rearranged or cancelled, please call the patient transport team on 020 3311 5272 to cancel your transport.
What should I do if I have not met the eligibility criteria?
If you do not meet the assessment criteria, one of our trained assessors will provide you with information on alternative ways to get to hospital. If you need help with travel costs the assessor will talk to you about the Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme.
If you feel that the assessment decision is incorrect you have the right to ask to speak to a supervisor who will try to resolve your transport issue. If it is not resolved, you have the right to appeal by contacting our patient advice and liaison service (PALS). Your appeal will be reviewed by the service that is caring for you.
Please note that appeals will only be considered in exceptional circumstances or when additional information on your mobility or medical condition is being presented.
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