Thursday, 5 September 2019
MORE than 1,900 patients from the Northern Tablelands who took long journeys to receive medical treatment in the past year have accessed the NSW Government’s Patients Travel and Accommodation Assistance Scheme (IPTAAS), local State MP Adam Marshall announced today.
“Over the past 12 months IPTAS has put $1.47 million back into the pockets of patients from Inverell, Armidale, Moree and Glen Innes,” Mr Marshall said.
“When you live in rural and regional areas the tyranny of distance can present unexpected challenges, including affordable access to essential specialist medical services.
“Having a serious medical condition that requires specialist treatment is stressful enough, without the additional out-of-pocket costs.
“With our region and all of country NSW struggling with the drought, the State Government is backing communities with this travel assistance scheme, which makes a significant difference to patients.”
IPTAAS subsidises the transport and accommodation expenses people incur when travelling at least 100 kilometres – or a cumulative distance of at least 200 kilometres in one week – to access specialist medical treatment.
Mr Marshall said of the top 20 towns for IPTAAS access in 2018-19, four were located in the region.
“It’s great to see so many patients in the region have benefited from the State Government’s $25.9 million investment into this essential travel assistance scheme,” he said.
Four of the top 20 recipients of IPTAAS funding across NSW in the last year are:
- Inverell – received $475,354, assisting 768 patients, placing it 3rd in NSW;
- Armidale – received $447,487, assisting 520 patients, placing it 4th in NSW;
- Moree – received $313,701 assisting 335 patients, placing it 7th in NSW; and
- Glen Innes – received $237,910 assisting 320 patients, placing it 9th in NSW.