Following an intervention by the MS Trust, Transport Scotland has now amended its criteria for people with MS applying for free bus travel.
Previously when applying for a National Entitlement Card, which enables bearers to free bus travel across Scotland, people with MS were told their application must be supported by a letter from a consultant neurologist. This raised a number of difficulties, as some people with MS do not regularly see a neurologist, and on top of that, many neurologists don’t have the resource to write individual letters for each patient.
Thanks to our efforts, which were prompted by Niall MacDougall, consultant neurologist at NHS Lanarkshire, this rule has now been changed. Those wishing to apply can now do so with a letter from a specialist medical professional, including an MS nurse, and not just from their neurologist.
Linden Muirhead, director of information and engagement at the MS Trust, commented:
We very much welcome this decision from Transport Scotland. Not everyone with MS sees a consultant neurologist – certainly not on a regular basis – so many people with MS in Scotland have been missing out on the free bus travel to which they are entitled. We hope that the new arrangements will open up the scheme to many more.