Mr. Alan Williams
To ask the Secretary of State for Health which health authority has responsibility under the national health service internal market for meeting the costs of travel, overnight accommodation and escorts when a patient from one health authority area is sent for treatment at a district hospital in another health authority area.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
In the new contracting arrangements, purchasers of health services—mainly district health authorities and fund holding GPs—will be responsible for meeting the costs of treatment given to their residents or patients; this will include the costs of ambulance transport—with an escort—if this is considered medically necessary. For other journeys, the hospital travel cost scheme provides full or partial reimbursement for the cost of travelling to hospital where patients are in receipt of income support or family credit; others on low income may also get help.