CAR-T (Chimeric Antigen Receptor) cell therapy is a type of treatment for leukaemia that has revolutionized the way leukaemia is treated. It was first approved for B cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), but is expected to change the way other forms of leukaemia patients are treated in the future.
The way the therapy is delivered means that patients often have long periods of waiting and spending time near to hospital in order to receive the treatment.
There are only 10 hospitals currently able to deliver CAR-T therapy in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. As a result you may need to travel to a different part of the country to receive treatment, and need accommodation nearby. This can cost a lot of money directly, or stop the person from being able to earn an income in this time.
You can read more about where you can get CAR-T treatment below and the hotels nearby that you can expect to stay in if you are successful in applying. You can also view the centres on this map.
Leukaemia Care believe that financial circumstances should never prevent someone from accessing the treatment they need. We have set up this project with our partners, Dalata Hotel Group, to prevent this from happening for as many patients as possible.
What will we fund?
This project has two parts. You can apply for accommodation, grant funding or both.
- Hotel accommodation
Thanks to our hotel partner Dalata, we can offer free accommodation in one double or twin room per family per stay for up to 30 days. This is booked and arranged by us and we must know the dates in advance. This cannot be exchanged for money, vouchers, or another hotel.
2. Grant funding:
We will pay up to £500 in a cash grant to help with other expenses related to having CAR-T therapy. This could include, but is not limited to:
- Travel expenses to and from your home and the hospital where you having CAR-T, such as bus tickets, train tickets, fuel, car maintenance, parking fees and taxi fares.
- The travel costs of people coming to visit you in the period you are away from home for CAR-T.
- Increased food costs whilst living away from home whilst undergoing CAR-T.
One grant per family.
Maximum award of £500 in cash and 30 days hotel accommodation.
This grant is only open to those currently going through CAR-T therapy. You can apply as soon as you become aware that CAR-T is recommended as a treatment for you. However, we will not pay out the grant until the date the CAR-T therapy begins. We will only book the hotel from the day your therapy starts. We define the “beginning of therapy” to mean the day that conditioning therapy starts, before cells are reinfused. Grants cannot be applied for retrospectively; you must apply before you begin conditioning chemotherapy or cell re-infusion.
The fund does not have a closing date. We will allocate funds on a first come first serve basis, based on the date we receive the full application with clinical letter, until the fund is depleted.
This fund is separate to the Financial Hardship Fund. Please read the eligibility criteria below to determine which fund is best suited to your needs, as you may not be able to apply for both.
The CAR-T Away From Home fund is designed to specifically cover the additional costs that arise when people have to stay away from home for CAR-T treatment. To qualify for both the grant and hotel accommodation, the applicant must live more than one hour away from the treatment centre. Anyone who is having CAR-T treatment locally can instead apply for other grants we have available at Leukaemia Care.
Patients or close family of patients who are CURRENTLY undergoing CAR-T therapy or similar cellular therapies. By currently, we mean CAR-T therapy is planned but the CAR-T cells have not yet been re-infused into the patient. See “What we will fund?” for more details, including advice on when to apply. This can be as part of a clinical trial, or an NHS approved treatment.
- Patient has a diagnosis of leukaemia, MDS, or an MPN.
Previous recipients of the Leukaemia Care Hospital Travel Fund or hardship grant will be considered but may not receive the full cash grant. Please contact us before applying if you have received either of these grants.
One grant per family and grants cannot be applied for retrospectively. If you are not currently receiving CAR-T, you may be eligible for our financial hardship fund instead.
Where are the CAR-T hospitals and which hotel should I expect to stay in?
Dalata Hotel Group is a collection of hotel brands. We are identified that each CAR-T centre in the UK has a Dalata Hotel Group hotel nearby, within the criteria required by CAR-T hospitals to stay within reach of the hospital. Often these are really close by.
The CAR-T hospitals and nearby hotels are:
Great Northern Children’s Hospital
Maldron Hotel Newcastle
Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust
Clayton Hotel Leeds
Manchester Royal Infirmary
Maldron Hotel Manchester City Centre
Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital
Clayton Hotel Manchester Airport
Queen Elizabeth Hospital (Birmingham)
Clayton Hotel Birmingham
Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (Glasgow)
Clayton Hotel Glasgow City
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Clayton Hotel Cambridge
University Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust
Clayton Hotel Bristol City
University College Hospital
Clayton Hotel Chiswick
Great Ormond Street Hospital
Clayton Hotel City of London
How to apply
There are two ways to apply:
- Online via clicking here.
If applying online:
- We will not ask you for any bank details. If you are successful we will contact you directly for these.
- We will still require a copy of a letter from your consultant confirming your diagnosis (scan and/or photocopies are acceptable). When your application form has been received we will email you for this. You can supply in advance by emailing it to email@example.com if you prefer.
2. By downloading our paper form and sending it to us via email or in the post. The paper form can be downloaded here.
If using the paper form:
- please return to firstname.lastname@example.org or via post to FREEPOST RLXX-RJRA-ACRH, Leukaemia Care, One Birch Court, Blackpole East, Worcester, WR3 8SG
- Please enclose a copy of a letter from your consultant confirming your diagnosis – scan and/or photocopies are acceptable.
If you have any queries about the fund or how to complete the application form, please call the Leukaemia Care helpline on 08088 010 444 and ask to speak with Lisa Barnett.
Processing your application
- We will acknowledge receipt of your application
- Your application will be assessed by the Patient Advocacy team
- You can expect a decision within 10 working days of Leukaemia Care assessing your application
- All applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application by email or post
- Successful applicants will also be contacted by phone to discuss next steps
- We may ask you to confirm your bank details by providing a paying-in slip or the top half of your bank statement
Your application will only be assessed if:
- you meet all of the eligibility criteria
- all parts of the application form are fully completed
- there are funds remaining within the CAR-T Away From Home fund for distribution
What you can expect if your application is successful
If you are applying for hotel accommodation, it is necessary to pass your details onto Dalata hotel groups to allow us to book the hotel on your behalf. By submitting the form, you consent to us doing this.
This fund would also not be possible without funding from our corporate partners. By submitting this form, you consent to us sharing the information in this form about why you need the grant anonymously through our own channels (e.g. internal reports, emails, social media) and with our corporate partners. We may also contact you to get more information about your situation. This will make sure we demonstrate the impact of the funding.
We will also ask you for feedback on receipt of the grant, to allow Leukaemia Care to measure the impact of the service once you have received the money. We will also contact you to see if we can help with anything else. Leukaemia Care has a dedicated benefits advisor and an advocacy officer who can help with accessing further grants or with other issues resulting from the diagnosis such as time off work.
If your application is unsuccessful
We are sorry your application has been unsuccessful. This is likely due to one of two reasons; either you do not meet the eligibility criteria or, the CAR-T Support Fund has been exhausted due to high demand.
If you are not currently receiving CAR-T, you may be eligible for our financial hardship fund instead. We will contact you to see if we can help in another way.
Your personal information will be used for the purposes of assessing your application, and if successful, to administer payment and to evidence the impact of the service on you.
In order to provide the hotel accommodation, we must share your personal details with the hotel. It is also a condition of the grant that we may use the information about why you need the grant anonymously to promote the service, and we may share this information with our funders anonymously to demonstrate the impact of the service.
For more information and to discuss the fund, please email our Advocacy team at email@example.com or call our freephone helpline on 08088 010 444 (services available Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm).