During patient wellness programs and chronic care management plans, consistent and reliable patient access to care is essential. Non-emergency medical transportation is a core solution to patient care access among populations facing transportation barriers like those across the rural southeast, which is why Mountain Area Transports & Security set up shop in Macon County, North Carolina.
Mountain Area Transports aims to provide comprehensive, full-service transportation for those in need throughout our service region, for both local and long-distance trips.
Transportation is a core social determinant of health or factor that impacts patient health that is not linked with disease burden or genetic makeup. The social determinants of health account for about 40 percent of patient health, according to a 2017 AHA report, meaning that supporting patient transportation can have a significant impact on patient wellness.
The AHA report noted that 3.6 million individuals – regardless of payer status – do not have access to medical care because they do not have transportation to appointments. Four percent of children miss medical appointments for that same reason. Additionally, transportation barriers serve as the third leading cause of missing a medical appointment.
Missed appointments impact both patient health and the healthcare revenue cycle. Patients who miss appointments may see their health and wellness deteriorate. As a result, healthcare costs can increase.
Non-emergency medical transportation includes transportation services offered to patients and healthcare consumers who face extraordinary barriers getting to their medical appointments.
Those barriers can be anything and can include not having a valid driver’s license, not having a working vehicle in the household, being unable to travel or wait for services alone, or having a physical, cognitive, mental, or developmental limitation.
Patients who manage a chronic illness, for example, need to attend their regular check-ins with their providers. These check-ins ensure the patient’s condition has not worsened and activate any kind of preventive care necessary to reduce the likelihood of a costly medical event. When a patient cannot attend these appointments, they are at risk of getting sicker and costing more healthcare dollars.
For more information about non-emergency medical transportation in Western North Carolina and Georgia, contact Mountain Area Transports today at 828-332-3032 or email at info@MTNTransport.com.