Healthcare organizations strive to provide the best possible service for their patients. However, the best people, facilities and equipment mean little when the patients cannot get to them. A 2005 study found that 3.6 million Americans (including almost 1 million children) miss or delay medical care due to transportation problems, causing a financial waste of $150 million. As a result, many organizations are looking at ways to help patients get to non-emergency appointments and facilities.
The advent of on-demand ride services such as Uber and Lyft has given healthcare organizations an option for solving patient transportation issues. Read on to see how some organizations are working to improve transportation for their patients:
- Nemours Children’s Health System, Wilmington, DE. Nemours has contracted with RoundTrip, a provider of medical transportation, to provide rides for patients and families who need them. Care coordinators at Nemours’ Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children use an online portal through which they can schedule transportation, document arrival and departure times and map out travel routes. There is also a channel through which patients can rate their transportation experience.
- Medicare patients in California, New York and Nevada. Ride service Lyft is working with the National Medtrans Network via a web-based dashboard called Concierge to coordinate rides for Medicare patients in the three states.
- Sarasota Memorial Health System, Florida. The health system’s Voalte mobile health platform includes the Uber app, which providers can use to schedule rides for their patients.
- Boston Children’s Hospital. Uber has partnered with startup Circulation, whose founders include Boston Children’s, to form a non-emergency medical transportation service.
- Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. The department arranges transportation for Medicaid patients who need help getting to non-emergency medical appointments through a startup called Veyo.
Veyo President Josh Komenda says, “Missed appointments often result in poorer health outcomes and worsened conditions, increasing healthcare costs over time. By using both mobile- and cloud-based technologies and predictive analytics to understand supply and demand in real-time, as well as adjust dispatch schedules and lead times, we’re creating a proactive, next-gen model to healthcare logistics.”