Introduction

The Patient Assistance Travel Scheme (PATS) is a subsidy program that provides financial help for travel and accommodation expenses if you need to travel a long distance to see an approved medical specialist.

You must be referred by a medical professional to the nearest approved specialist.

The scheme covers all of the following:

  • return fares to and from appointments
  • accommodation costs of up to $60 each night
  • ground transport costs - such as for taxis and buses - a maximum of $50 each trip will be paid when you provide a receipt/s
  • you can claim 20 cents per kilometre if you drive more than 200km to an appointment.

Who can apply

To be eligible for the scheme you must:

  • be an Australian citizen or permanent resident who has lived in the Northern Territory (NT) for six months or longer
  • qualify for Medicare
  • have a current referral to the nearest approved specialist medical service.
  • live more than 200km away from the nearest approved specialist
  • have to travel more than 400km in one week for renal or oncology treatment.

You are not eligible for PATS if:

  • you are on holidays or business and normally live outside of the NT
  • you are undertaking a journey to or from Australia
  • your permanent residence is not in the NT - this includes fly-in-fly-out contractors
  • you can claim compensation or cover from somewhere else, such as Worksafe, Department of Corrections, Department of Veterans' Affairs or motor vehicle compensation
  • you do not have a Medicare card.

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Last updated: 20 December 2016