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Painful Journeys

We did it!

The NHS has announced a national review of patient transport to and from hospital as a result of our campaigning. Thank you for making it happen.

Thousands of you told us that you or a loved one really struggle with travelling to your hospital appointments.

For most of us just having a hospital appointment is enough to worry about, but imagine having to make a long and complicated journey alone, in pain and feeling anxious about not getting there in time.

This isn’t good enough, but it doesn’t have to be like this.

Thanks to campaigners like you adding your voices, the NHS has announced it will review patient transport so that older people are given the care and support they need.

Our system for getting older people to hospital isn't fit-for-purpose...

  • Transporting older people to and from hospital costs the NHS and the Government millions of pounds a year
  • Yet who gets help and how good that help is seems to be a postcode lottery
  • Currently, many older people are experiencing anxiety, exhaustion and distress getting to their hospital appointments
  • Every older person deserves to get to their hospital appointments safely without it being a struggle

...the NHS review is a step towards stopping painful journeys being part of life for older people

Read our report on the Healthwatch website

Our joint report with Healthwatch looks in-depth at what people tell us about their experiences of travelling to and from NHS services.

Peter's Painful Journey

We hear from thousands of older people who struggle with travelling to hospital, such as Peter, 79, who had to spend £720 in 18 months on taxis because there's not a direct bus.

Want to know more?

Our campaign and policy reports explore the issue and explain why getting to hospital appointments is a major issue for older people.

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Last updated: Jul 20 2021

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