The Medicaid benefits program specifically states that transportation for medical services is covered in their program. It is a mandatory program, specifically for patients who are unable to transport themselves to the hospital. They may not have a valid driver’s license, aren’t able to drive themselves to the hospital for their check-ups, or perhaps don’t have a working vehicle. Dispatchers, particularly in the field of non-medical emergency transportation, are able to connect patients in need with transportation services in order to get to their appointments on time–this is a service that Medicaid provides.
NEMT providers offer their services to people who need them–and as such, they operate under their own “rules” per se, while in their own jurisdiction. However, NEMT dispatch software providers have specific duties attached to their usage of the software. They are required to offer their transportation services to transport patients to their appointment and back from their appointment, and should also use the most comfortable form of transportation for the patient e.g. ambulance, stretcher, air transport, wheelchair van, or litter van. All costs that are associated with the usage of any of these modes of transportation are fully covered.
Transportation services are relatively cheap, particularly when one compares it to the costs of the healthcare system, which has been continually growing. This is why it is better to use the transportation services as part of a preventative care treatment plan, rather than an emergency.
Benefits of Automation–NEMT
The transportation software for NEMT automatically automates certain actions, both in house and outside, for transportation service operators. For example, the NEMT automation software automates transportation schedules and dispatches, which means the transportation service providers don’t have to bother with using paper and creating a schedule for everyone. Providers who use NEMT can easily book several trips at once, with relative ease, and it is automatically in the system for the transportation operators to see.
There are several features that are of use–particularly the client and resource management features. These help the NEMT system to keep an accurate list of drivers. The real-time dispatch feature helps the drivers keep up to any new clients, last-minute cancellations, and any other abrupt changes to the schedule. The online booking portal and the client notification feature immediately tells not only the back office, but also the driver when there are any schedule changes–a client cancels, reschedules, or can confirm that their trip is still ongoing. Drivers receive this information from technology housed in their vehicles.
NEMT software also enables faster billing and payments from Medicaid to the drivers, which improves the accuracy of the billing and results in fewer rejected service trips for lack of payment.
Using NEMT means that there are further costs for the drivers, associated with the job. It cuts down redundancies and improves efficiency for all trips, schedules, and monitors the service in real-time. The software can be used by a NEMT company, which means it can scale up and down to any size needed for any particular situation the company finds itself in.
The software also constantly analyzes the schedule and each transportation vehicle, looking for ways to fit in a new trip without sacrificing much time or energy to do so, on the part of the driver. It also constantly analyzes the data it collects to minimize future inconveniences, problems, or performance issues. Google Maps has been integrated into the software, which keeps the driver to their schedule, can instantly re-route if there is traffic, and can easily assign another drive the route if one driver is running late.
NEMT’s automated software helps reduce stress and tension for the driver, by automatic scheduling and instant dispatch updates. This causes the drivers to make fewer mistakes and are more efficient at their job, due to the intuitive technology that they have at their fingertips.
NEMT dispatchers have said that once they have initially paid for the NEMT technology and then installed it into their vehicles, it doesn’t take very long for it to pay for itself in increased efficiency and reduced stress. Payroll hours are increased for everyone, as they aren’t just sitting around waiting for jobs to be scheduled. This has caused particularly high volume companies to manage their clients better, in a more efficient way, which leads to greater customer satisfaction, as well as satisfied drivers. It is very obvious that automating transportation is the way to go.