The move follows lobbying from Mr Durkan, calling for improved support for families and comes just one month after Minister Swann previously stated in response to his Assembly Question, that no changes were planned for the Hospital Travel Scheme.
Said the Foyle MLA: “This is a small step but a positive one nonetheless for parents of sick children who have been impacted by the added financial burden of travel costs.
“For any parent, the prospect of their child being unwell or requiring a hospital stay is worrying in itself.
“Yet for many parents of children with long-term health conditions, travel costs to avail of specialist medical treatment can prove costly.
“In such instances the family of young inpatients are excluded from the Hospital Travel Costs scheme.
“I’d written to the Health Minister seeking either an expansion of the criteria under this scheme or the establishment of a Young Patients Family Fund.
“I’m pleased this massive gap in support has now been identified and that steps are being take to resolve it.
“I appreciate this is early days but I will continue to push for this vital and necessary provision.”Tags: