lpm wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 25, 2022 1:50 pm
No, it would largely impact people with chronic health issues who repeatedly miss health appointments.
Which is frequently a consequence of having a chronic health condition you reactionary arse.
Booking a wheelchair taxi can be nearly impossible. Even if one can be booked, sometimes the taxi firm sends a conventional taxi, at which point you are f.cked. And yes, the NHS do hold it against you if you had a taxi booked and despite the booking clearly indicating a wheelchair cab - as acknowledged by the taxi firm after the inevitable complaint - the taxi firm sends a cab a wheelchair user can't get into.
Likewise carers can be unreliable. That gets held against the patient too.
And chronic health conditions harm people's ability to function normally in all areas of life, potentially, especially in a society that just isn't set up for us. You might take it for granted that you can catch a bus. I don't really like talking in terms of privilege in this area, but relative to someone with mobility problems, the average person is very privileged, to the point they just aren't aware of the obstacles others face. Most people don't realise that wheelchair users, for example, are still frequently prevented from getting on buses. Yes, it's illegal, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. And even when the driver abides by the law, there's only ever space for one wheelchair at a time. And even if you can get the bus, are there dropped kerbs? There's been regulations about those for decades, but as a society, we've decided it's ok to just ignore them because it only hurts a small minority that face serious barriers to advocating for themselves - you know, the same minority you are so f.cking patronisingly ignorant about as you gleefully seize upon an idea to make the least well off in every sense of the word pay.
And I really mean it when I say able bodied people just don't see the obstacles. I've known some very right on people who have all said the right things about access, and yet when they've travelled with me, there's just so many things they've never even thought of that they see - and I'm right at the top end of function for wheelchair users, with a chair that is specifically built to overcome the obstacles left in place by an ableist society.
And no, the patient transport service is not fit for purpose. It isn't meant to be. It's meant to be so unpleasant people don't use it.
So yes, it does come down to taxi or carer. And those aren't reliable either, so if they fall through, you miss the appointment. A humane service, a service that actually understood its legal obligations towards people with disabilities, would seek to mitigate the effects of that, not to compound them to spare the better off a tiny bit of tax.