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Non-emergency patient transport


For all Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust Sites


Explanatory note: NHS-funded transport includes ambulance, voluntary or taxi provision for non-emergency journeys to hospital and day centres. We have amended the Non-Emergency patient transport policy, which contains eligibility criteria for booking patients and escorts, to make sure the transport process is consistent across the Trust. This may mean that patients who previously travelled on NHS transport are no longer eligible.



It is the patients’ responsibility to get themselves to and from their health care appointment or hospital admissions. At all times patients must arrange their own transport unless they satisfy one or more of the following criteria:

  • Patients requiring continuous oxygen or intravenous support
  • Patients requiring a stretcher
  • Patients who are unable to stand or walk more than a few steps, cannot use public transport and cannot manage in a family car
  • Patients with clearly recognised disabilities who are genuinely unable to travel by private or public transport

Note: A patient receiving mobility allowance is NOT eligible for NHS funded transport.



Only professional escorts will normally be allowed to travel; a family/friend escort may travel only if the patient falls into one of the following categories:

  • Is under sixteen years of age
  • Has significant communication difficulties, including learning difficulties, impaired sight or is hard of hearing
  • Has cognitive behavioural issues /  mental health problems that prevents him/her travelling alone
  • The patient’s medical condition is such that he/she requires constant supervision for safety
  • The patient requires a carer to assist him/her at their destination

Note: mobility needs alone do not necessitate an escort, as the patient’s mobility needs will be met by ambulance transport or hospital staff.

You can read the Department of Health’s eligibility criteria for patient transport services on their website.


This statement will be reviewed in light of new evidence or guidance from NICE as and when issued.


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