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Hospital appointments for sick child

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Complicated situation.

 

A relative of mine has a sick neonate. Baby needs to travel to London for a liver biopsy and the hospital have told them they must arrange transport. They don't have a car. Baby is not currently an inpatient but is going into hospital for tests and check ups daily, he was in neonatal intensive care for 3 weeks after his birth and has only been home a week or so. The boyfriend works at a fast food restaurant but is off because of the baby being poorly and is not entitled to sick pay there so they are living on child tax credits, working tax credits and child benefit. They have a 3yo as well as the neonate.

 

Are they entitled to any help with transport to London? Seems amazing that they can be expected to take public transport with a poorly baby, plus atm they don't have a clue how they can afford the trip as there are no wages coming in.

 

Also, as the boyfriend is not working and is not entitled to sick pay or anything (he's not ill) is there anything else they can claim in the meantime? They hope he will be off work only briefly but he needs to support the family right now and he is very worried about the neonate obviously.

 

Any help and advice appreciated.

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If they earn under around £15276 a year, they should have been sent a card which gives them help with cost of travel to hospital, prescriptions, etc.

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Nystagmite, not sure what he has earned to date. Before the baby was born the father was working up to 13 hour (double) shifts 7 days a week to try and gather money for the baby so although minimum wage no doubt, his income might have been considerable then. Of course that meant less HB etc. though. The baby has been very poorly since birth and he's only managed a few shifts while the baby was in hospital, since discharge he has not managed any work as baby needs to go back to hospital most days for tests etc. They've been using taxis as the baby is too poorly for public transport and have absolutely no money now and have no idea how they will get to London for the biopsy.

 

eta thanks for the link, have emailed them!

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She has an NHS maternity certificate, that'll be different from the normal nhs tax exemption card though I suspect? I'm fast losing ideas, still can't believe they expect this young Mum and sick baby to make their own way up!

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I think the maternity one is only for prescriptions.

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Thanks sparks though that service is a local one, helping people get to their local hospitals. I doubt they would take her to London. I wonder what would happen if she told the local hospital she's unable to get there?!

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https://www.gov.uk/community-care-grant/eligibility

You don't have to be in receipt of benefits to claim a CCG but have a look at this link and it may be worth applying for some help.

 

Most hospitals do have a transport facility so it may be worth contacting the hospital directly to enquire about help with travel costs. From memory if you have entitlement to WTC you claim back travel costs for attending NHS appintments as long as you have the exemption certificate or entitlement notification letter.

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Thanks sparks though that service is a local one, helping people get to their local hospitals. I doubt they would take her to London. I wonder what would happen if she told the local hospital she's unable to get there?!

I will ask my sister when I see her online, she had to take her son to as London hospital every month or so for a long time, I am sure she got some help with travel costs

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The other thing they can do is call the London hospital and explain their situation and will need assistance with transport - it may be that they will qualify for NHS transport where the hospital doing the biopsy sends a form to the gp's for them to confirm transport is required due to medical condition.

 

Can't do any harm to ask!

 

Feebee_71

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