"Doctors appointments and collecting tablets."

About: NHS Shetland

(as the patient),

I have no transport during the times of doctors surgery as I live at least 6 miles away I find it difficult seeing a doctor. Also since the delivery of tablets by the postie has been stopped it is difficult to get my tablets. I can't be alone in this situation ther must be more people in rural Shetland like me.

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Response from Carolyn Hand, Corporate Services Manager/Complaints Officer, Chief Executive's Department, NHS Shetland

Thank you for taking the time to provide this feedback. In general people are responsible for getting themselves to health service appointments except for some particular schemes – the Scottish Ambulance Patient Transport service exists for people getting to hospital in an emergency or for hospital appointments where they are too ill / disabled to travel by normal means. The Highland and Islands Travel Scheme reimburses patients for hospital admissions or appointments if they live in very remote or rural areas, specifically for journeys over 30 miles by land or 5 miles by sea, but does not reimburse travel to primary care or community services.

Where local public transport does not support journeys to health centres or other health services we are happy to support patients in lobbying the Local Authority about the gaps, and to work together within local communities to encourage volunteer driver schemes for people who do not have access to their own transport or friends/neighbours who can help them. If you would like to contact us in this regard, please do not hesitate to get in touch on 01595 743060.

Dr Sarah Taylor

Director of Public Health

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