Treatments and tests

What costs can PATS help with?

Road travel

You will be eligible for travel assistance if you:

  • travel by private vehicle you may claim a fuel subsidy of 16 cents per kilometre. Only 1 claim per vehicle can be made
  • are travelling with 1, or more, other applicants in a minibus, or similar group transport vehicle, owned by a community or organisation, the fuel subsidy is 25 cents per kilometre per vehicle payable to the relevant organisation
  • travel by coach or rail you are eligible to be reimbursed for the relevant economy or discounted fare
  • need to access dialysis or cancer treatment and must travel between 70 and 100 kilometres you are eligible for a flat $20 subsidy. This travel subsidy is only available when the health service is unable to provide alternative transport options.

Air travel

You will be eligible for PATS for air travel where:

  • a regularly scheduled air service from the point of departure to the point of destination exists and travel to the nearest eligible specialist involves road travel of more than 16 hours (one way), or is subject to excessive connection delays and prolonged stops
  • your referring medical practitioner certifies that road travel (even journeys less than 16 hours) could pose a clinical risk to your health
  • you are required to travel more than 350 km by road to access cancer treatment. You are eligible for commercial air travel provided the cancer treatment involves:
    • surgery
    • radiotherapy
    • chemotherapy
    • immunotherapy
    • palliative intervention
    • a combination of the above.

Accommodation subsidy

You may be eligible for an accommodation subsidy if you live more than 100 km from the treatment centre and are required to stay overnight if:

  • your specialist certifies that you need to stay overnight for follow-up care
  • you are receiving cancer treatment
  • the outward and return journey cannot be reasonably made in one day
  • you are travelling in a private vehicle on a journey of more than 750 km one way. In this case you can claim an accommodation allowance to assist with the cost of a stop-over on the way
  • transport schedules prevent you from returning home immediately.

The subsidy limits are:

  • private home accommodation – $20 per night for an eligible applicant or $40 per night for an eligible applicant travelling with an approved escort or carer
  • commercial accommodation – up to $60 per night for an eligible applicant or up to $75 per night for an eligible applicant travelling with an approved escort or carer.

PATS accommodation assistance is available for continuous stays of up to 6 consecutive months.

Additional transport assistance

If your referring practitioner specifies that your condition warrants further transport assistance to ensure you can attend your specialist appointment, additional financial assistance may be available in some limited circumstances for the cost of bus, taxi or airport shuttle fares.


Acknowledgements
WA Country Health Service

This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your healthcare professional. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional for a diagnosis and answers to their medical questions.

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