Travel and Accommodation
This project looks at the impact of the travel and accommodation policy on South Island cancer patients accessing treatment at the Christchurch and Dunedin Cancer Centres. Oncology service providers throughout the cancer continuum and consumers were interviewed regarding their experiences of travel and accommodation issues for, and as cancer patients.
Key Issues Identified
- Patients unaware of Ministry of Health (MoH) National Travel Assistance (NTA) scheme or other assistance available in their cancer journey
- Patients having no choice but to travel for diagnosis and treatment
- Significant financial hardship for those ineligible for NTA or Work and Income assistance
- Family concerns
- Support issues – both at home and when travelling
- Employment and self-employment issues
- Ethnic groups not accessing cancer support services
- Clarity regarding NTA policy, eligibility, and claiming
- Rates of reimbursement for mileage and friends and family providing accommodation
- Accommodation, financial and practical assistance available via cancer charities
- Practical considerations relating to travel arrangements
- Information regarding NTA, its availability, clarity and patient’s understanding of this.
- Access of financial assistance through Work and Income