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Date: 23 September 2019

Time: 01:59

Non-emergency patient transport

What is non-emergency patient transport?

Non-emergency patient transport is a free transport service, which is only provided to patients who have a specific medical need and are attending healthcare services. It is your responsibility to make your own way to and from healthcare services, unless there is a medical reason why you cannot use private or public transport.

This includes: walking, cycling, bus, train, taxi or community/voluntary transport schemes; use of mobility cars, lifts from family, carers, neighbours or other support networks; or a combination of these.

A non-emergency patient is someone who has a medical need for patient transport, but does not require an emergency ambulance or immediate response.

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Who provides non-emergency patient transport?

The hospital itself does not provide any patient transport services.

Patient transport is provided locally by West Midlands Ambulance Service to those who live within the area and are eligible.

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How is transport arranged?

You will be responsible for booking your own transport directly with West Midlands Ambulance Service. You can ask a family member, carer or friend to do it on your behalf.

When booking, the following information will be requested:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • NHS number
  • Pick-up address (including postcode)
  • GP name and practice address
  • Date, time and location of your appointment

To make a booking, please call West Midlands Ambulance Service on 0800 035 6511.

The telephone booking line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you require an interpreter, this can be arranged during the booking process.

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How will my eligibility be assessed?

Your eligibility will be checked by West Midlands Ambulance Service’s booking staff every time you book transport. You will be asked a series of questions when you call the booking office.

Your eligibility for transport is based on your medical need and risks to your health. The assessment also helps the ambulance service determine the type of vehicle that is required and level of support required from transport staff.

If someone is calling on your behalf, they will be required to answer the questions in order for your eligibility to be checked. If you are not eligible for free transport, you will be given details of local alternative services that may be available to you.

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Once transport is booked, what happens next?

Once the booking has been made, you do not need to take any further action. West Midlands Ambulance Service provides a free text-messaging service. You can register for this to receive a text confirming your booking, including any updates on the day of your journey.

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Will my transport pick me up again?

Yes. All patients attending an appointment, and who have transport booked with West Midlands Ambulance Service, will have a return journey booked for them at the same time.

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What happens if I live outside the West Midlands area?

You will need to contact your local NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) who will advise you on what you need to do. You can get your CCG's contact details from your GP surgery.

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If I do not require non-emergency patient transport but need help with the cost of travelling, is there support available?

If you are not eligible for free transport but you are on a low income, you may quality for assistance towards the cost of travelling to and from NHS healthcare services.

Further information on the NHS Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme is available via the link below, or from your GP surgery.

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