CLARENCE MP Chris Gulaptis has welcomed the NSW Liberals and Nationals commitment to enhance the Isolated Patient Travel and Accommodation Assistance Scheme (IPTAAS) if re-elected.
Mr Gulaptis said he spoke in Parliament last year and also presented a Petition containing over 12,000 signatures initiated by Corindi resident, Dr Linda Samera to the Minister for Health seeking further improvements to IPTAAS.
Under the NSW Liberals & Nationals, enhancements to the IPTAAS scheme will include:
- An increase in the petrol subsidy from 19 cents to 22 cents per kilometre - a 15% increase;
- An increase in the commercial accommodation subsidy for eight to 14 night stays
- From $43 to $80 - an 86% boost (single room) per night
- From $60 to $105 - a 75% jump (double room) per night;
- An increase in the commercial accommodation subsidy for 15 night-plus stays
- From $43 to $105 - a 144% boost (single room) per night,
- From $60 to $120 - a 100% jump (double room) per night;
- A reduction in the patient co-payment from $40 to $30 - a 25% decrease;
- Claims for prosthetic services will be eligible;
- Claims for some specialist allied health services will be eligible.
A re-elected NSW Liberals & Nationals Government will also:
- Simplify IPTAAS forms and make online claims easier;
- Reduce the time taken to process claims and reimburse patients;
- Establish a dedicated 1800-number to streamline patient and carer enquiries;
- Make small claims under $100 easier to lodge
"I am pleased that the Government has listened and has acted to provide further support to rural and regional patients who need to travel long distances for treatment."
Mr Gulaptis said almost 10,000 IPTAAS claims were lodged in the Northern NSW and Mid North Coast Local Health Districts last year.
"The importance of IPTAAS to our community cannot be underestimated and these enhancements will have countless benefits for patients and their loved ones," he said.
"This is about supporting rural and regional patients who are faced with difficult times and distance should not be a barrier to them receiving quality health care.
"Providing improved financial support under IPTAAS and ensuring the scheme is in line with what our community needs and deserves is the least we can do.
"The NSW Liberals & Nationals are putting patients first by boosting subsidies and cutting red tape to deliver an enhanced service for patients in their time of need," Mr Gulaptis said.