Getting to hospital

In a medical emergency, you should dial 999 for an ambulance. A medical emergency is a critical, or life-threatening, situation. There is no charge if you call an ambulance in an emergency.

Non-emergency ambulance

You normally make your own way to hospital but, If you don't have your own transport or need specialist care on the way to hospital, you might be eligible for a non-emergency ambulance. This service is free for NHS patients, but you need to be referred by your doctor, dentist, midwife or other health professional. They will consider factors such as the availability of private or public transport, and the distance you need to travel.

Most NHS non-emergency ambulances will carry non-NHS patients, but you will need to pay the appropriate charges. Get in touch with the South East Coast Ambulance Service to find out more.

Help with your travel costs

If cannot meet the travel costs to hospital or organise a friend or relative to take you, you may be able to claim a refund under the Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme (HTCS).

Help with visitors travel costs

If your close friends or relatives are on a low income and visiting you in hospital, they may be eligible for financial help from the Social Fund to cover their travel costs. There is no other government scheme to help hospital visitors with travel costs.

Directions to hospitals in East Sussex

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