Funding to support a patient


Patient Hardship Grants: Key Details

  • Support for Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust patients (and their families) facing immediate financial difficulty because of their medical treatment at a Trust hospital. 
  • Up to £1,500 
  • You can apply at any time from Tuesday 9 April 2024 and we will respond within five working days 

Receiving care in hospital can be very stressful for patients and their families. In some cases, the situation is made even harder when their care leads to unexpected or unmanageable financial pressures.

We can help you offer extra support to your patients and their families at times of serious financial difficulty by providing emergency funding through our patient hardship  programme.

Our grants can be used to cover a range of specific costs, including:

  • Travel: to help your patient travel to hospital for appointments or patient’s family members visit them in hospital
  • Food: for an outpatient's special dietary requirements to help with their recovery, or for family members to buy food whilst visiting their loved ones in hospital
  • Accommodation: to help your patients (and members of their family) stay nearby to be able to attend their hospital appointments 
  • Essentials: to help your patients buy essential items they might need due to their hospital treatment
  • Funerals: to help bereaved families cover a funeral director’s cost if their loved one had received treatment and passed away at one of our hospitals

You can apply on behalf of your patient (and members of their family) for a maximum of £1,500 per patient

Find out more information about our patient hardship grants below, including details about how to apply for funding.  

For further guidance, you can read our guidance on applying for a patient hardship grant and costs we can support to help you get started on your application.

How do I apply?

Please complete the application form on our online grants system, Flexigrant. You'll need to open a Flexigrant account if you don't already have one.

Log in and click on 'Application System' in the left hand panel. Then scroll down and select 'Start a new application' for patient hardship 2024/25. Click 'Start' to begin your application. 

When can I apply?

You can apply at any time during the year from Tuesday 9 April 2024. However, please be aware we will temporarily close the programme during the following periods: 

Festive period 2024  

Applications submitted after Friday 29 November 2024 will be assessed from w/c 6 January 2025.  

2024/25 financial year-end and 2025/26 new financial year 

Patient Hardship will close on Friday 7 March 2025 and reopen on Tuesday 8 April 2025. 

Grant payments will not be made during these periods – between 9 December 2024 and 6 January 2025, and 10 March 2025 to 8 April 2025. 

What are the criteria?
  • Only Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust staff can apply on behalf of their patients. Patients (and their families) cannot apply directly. 
  • At the time of applying, your patient must be receiving care at one of our Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust hospitals. They can be an inpatient or an outpatient. 
  • We want to help patients who are most in need, so please make sure - to the best of your ability - that you're applying on behalf of a patient (and their family) who is in critical need of financial support to help them attend medical appointments at our hospitals or for their family to visit them at our hospital. 
  • Applications need to be signed by you, your line manager and your patient. These signatures show that you accept responsibility for the grant and its conditions. This also enables us to comply with data protection regulations. By signing, your patient gives their consent for us to use their personal information when assessing and processing the application. If your patient is unable to sign themselves, a ‘responsible other’ can sign on their behalf - for example, their parent, guardian or partner. If you are not able to obtain their signature, please contact us for further support before you submit your application. 
  • Your patient must qualify for free NHS healthcare to apply for patient hardship. You can find more information about this here. If you're unsure, please contact us for further advice. 
How much can I apply for?

You can apply for up to £1,500 per patient. For further advice, please read our guidance notes on costs we can support.

Please be aware that after assessing your application, we may award a different amount to what you have requested.

Can I apply for something for my patient that’s not on your list?

We can only provide funding to support with costs relating to specific items listed in our guidance notes on costs we can support. 

However, we understand that your patients may have many other needs. If this is the case, we recommend using the helpful Turn2Us Grant search tool to find out about alternative sources of funding. 

How does the funding work?

If your application is successful, we will send you a grant award letter. This will include guidance on how to access the funds. For further advice, read our guidance on applying for a patient hardship grant

If your patient no longer needs the funding, is discharged from hospital or is transferred to a different NHS trust before using all of their grant, please contact us to let us know. We will be able to award any unspent funds to support another patient in critical need. 

Quick link

Click here to access the online application form

Top tip

Click here to see our workflow showing how these grants work, from application to payment

Still have questions?