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Ministry of Health reviewing National Travel Assistance Policy

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Ministry of Health is beginning a review of the policy which guides the National Travel Assistance Scheme.

The Scheme is designed to contribute to the costs of people who need to travel long distances, or frequently, to receive specialist services.

District health boards (DHBs) use the National Travel Assistance (NTA) Policy to deliver the scheme to eligible recipients.

The current NTA Policy has been in place since 2005 and the most recent feedback to the Ministry is that the Scheme, whilst really valued by patients, could be easier to access and use for everybody who may wish to.

The way it is applied in each region of the country is also seen as very important.

The purpose of the review is to assess whether the NTA Scheme is still effective and what improvements could be made to it.

The Ministry’s early thinking about the focus of the review is that it could consider whether:

the Scheme is fair

those with the highest needs are accessing the scheme

administration of the Scheme works for people

payment levels are a reasonable contribution to people’s costs, and

the National Policy and Guide are clear.

The Ministry is carrying out the review in the context of the goals of the refreshed New Zealand Health Strategy (2016). The Strategy sets the direction of health services to improve the health of people and communities. You can read a summary of the strategy and download a copy at New Zealand Health Strategy.

The Ministry is seeking nominations for a Leadership Group to be the central point of ideas, discussion and options development for the review. Nominations close at 5pm on 20 October 2017.

The Review is starting in October 2017 and will finish in approximately March 2018.

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