Do you run a non emergency medical transport business? If YES, here are 7 sure tips and 7 best places you can get non emergency medical transport contracts. Patient transportation is an essential component of the health and medical services industry as there are many patients that need help getting to and from medical appointments. The non-emergency medical transportation market is basically comprised of those who require assisted transportation from one place to another, on a one off, occasional or regular basis.

It includes those who are not mobile enough to walk, drive, get in and out of public transport independently or those who are ambulatory. Ambulatory means that such a person walks, but moves slower due to disability or age. Such a person may walk using a cane or walker.

There are many patients who need to be ferried to and from their homes, appointments or medical facilities, either within a single hospital complex or across a larger area. While the NHS does provide non-emergency transport services, it doesn’t necessarily accommodate the quickly rising demand. That is what gave rise to the business of non-emergency medical transportation.

But for your non-emergency medical transportation business to be successful, you must have to get contracts frequently, if not, you will have a business, but no services to carry out. As such, medical transportation contracts are a vital component if you wish to start a business in this field.

If you want to start your non-emergency medical transportation business or you have already started, and you are wondering how to get contract to sustain your business, we have given you a few suggestions that can work best for your business.

7 Best Places to Get Non-emergency Medical Transportation Contracts

As long as non-emergency medical transportation contract are concerned, there are a few places you can get these contracts exclusively. We have tried to outline them for you.

  1. Private Paying Clients

Private paying clients are one of the biggest niche areas you can take advantage of to get contract for your non-emergency medical transportation business. In fact, some businesses in this industry target private paying clients exclusively.

This kind of client usually pays full price and you can benefit from regular business if you serve them well and take some time to build a relationship. Profit margins with this kind of customer are great. However, you will have to do some marketing to reach them at first until you build up a good reputation and start getting ‘word of mouth’ referrals.

  1. Medicaid Opportunities

Medicaid NEMT or Non Emergency Medical Transportation is a phrase typically used to describe a transportation benefit for Medicaid members that ensures eligible patients can get to and from their medical appointments, the pharmacy, urgent care, or the hospital.

NEMT is an important part of the healthcare continuum, especially for those with chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, COPD, or asthma. A Medicaid NEMT broker contracts with a State Medicaid Agency to manage patient transportation in a designated area.

In some states Medicaid uses regional brokers who determine who is eligible and how they should be transported to and from their appointments. In other states you will have to seek approval from Medicaid directly if you are to use this medium.

Rates will vary so you will have to do a little research in order to find out if it is worth transporting Medicaid clients in your area. However, such an opportunity usually means a good monthly volume of decent paying work as well as checks that come on time like clockwork.

  1. Medical Institutions

Medical institutions are another place you can get regular non-emergency medical transportation contracts. Many transportation businesses get contracts directly with hospitals, medical centers, dialysis centers and various other medical institutions. Such relationships can provide you with one off clients who are being discharged from the emergency room or regular clients who have appointments for treatments as often as three times a week.

  1. Retirement Communities and Nursing Homes

Another great market to tap into is retirement homes and assisted living communities. These people who are aged or disable often require transport for medical appointments. They will also often need transport for other purposes such as shopping, recreation or visiting family members.

  1. Opportunities with Schools

Schools often require daily transportation services for disabled students. Such a contract could provide one of your vans with several hours of work every morning and afternoon transporting these children to and from school. They may also require specialized transportation for occasional school field trips.

  1. Workers Compensation

Many NEMT businesses also provide transportation to those on workers compensation. People who have been injured at work often need transportation to and from medical clinics for checkups and treatments. You need to contact workers compensation authorities in your state to find out how you can go about applying to provide medical transportation to recipients of workers compensation.

  1. Local Health Authorities

Once your business is set up, licensed and in compliance with local regulations, you can then submit your details to health authorities in your state. Health authorities often receive requests from individuals or organizations looking for non-emergency medical transportation. If your business is on the list of contacts that is given out in cases where such enquiries are received then you can pick up some easy business without much effort.

How to Ensure That You Get Non-emergency Medical Transportation Contracts Regularly

  • Take publicity seriously

For any business to flourish, you need to make people know about it. This is the same with the non-emergency medical transportation business. You need to create as much publicity as you can for your new business. Print flyers and leaflets and drop them at hospitals, give them to doctors, drop them off at school and in the general neighborhood.

Another good thing you can do for your business publicity-wise is to spread it on the internet. You should open up social media pages where you get to reach your target market from.

  • Watch your rates

As is the case with any kind of business, the fees you set for your customers will have an essential part to play with them accepting your services. As NEMT business operators typically earn between $35 and $60 per hour, you will need to find the price that fits best with where you are in business. City operators can charge more than rural operators.

Plus, depending on your specific client base, you may be able to offer discount packages or incentive programs that will increase your cash flow when things slow down. Take a look at NEMT operations of similar sizes and those that offer a similar service to yours (in a similar location). Examine their pricing models, their geographic delivery area and the size and type of their fleet.

Your pricing model can reflect your community’s ability to pay as well as their expectations. You are competing with taxi services and public transit options. What sets you apart will become your marketing advantage when you approach your community for their business

  • Have an identifiable brand

Speaking of marketing, you will need to find a way to reach your demographic through the use of a brand. A brand is something that identifies you and what your customers will recognize as being you and your business. It can be a name, a color scheme, a slogan or a combination of things. Whatever you choose as your brand will be able to set your service apart from others, including potential competitors. You should make your brand easy to remember and easy to identify.

  • Find your competitive edge

In communities where you may have competition in the form of various other transportation providers, you will need to find something that makes your non-emergency medical transportation business stand out from all the others.

It may be that you provide personal service, it may be that you take the time to get to know your clients and are a welcome part of their family. This could be the ‘hook’ that makes your service different from the others. Whatever you choose to focus on, make it the item you use as part of your brand, in advertising and promotion plus any other tool you use to communicate with your client base.

  • Diversify

As you will be servicing an age group that will require a number of different needs, you may see additional opportunities developing. This means that maybe there is room for additional services to be offered as either an extension of your NEMT service or as a completely new business venture. Your specific location and the needs of your customers should guide you with this.

  • Get in touch with a broker

Brokers are one set of people that help businesses in the non-emergency transportation industry to thrive. It goes without saying that brokers want you to succeed. They want you to be reliable. They want to pay/reimburse you quickly and have you import trips accurately. If you’re going to grow, you are going to need to work closely with brokers to fully enable your operation, both financially as well as for your credibility.

There are several ways to do this, but essentially you will need to keep detailed records in order to meet the demands of a broker. When a broker sends out trips (with all pertinent client and trip data), they expect you to be able to deliver each trip exactly as they order it.

Once you can work with a broker, you will see a shift in your business and if you can meet their demands, then everyone wins. So, you need to find ways to get in touch with brokers in your industry and register your business with them.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Is A Medicaid NET Broker?

Medicaid NEMT or Non Emergency Medical Transportation is a phrase typically used to describe a transportation benefit for Medicaid members that ensures eligible patients can get to and from their medical appointments, the pharmacy, urgent care, or the hospital.

  1. How Are Medicaid NEMT Benefits Managed?

State Medicaid agencies can manage the authorization of NEMT coverage, or they can contract with another entity – a transportation broker or a managed care organization – to manage NEMT coverage.

If a state decides to work with a transportation broker, they will pick a broker based on a vary range of qualifications which may include cost, experience, and knowledge of their region. The chosen broker’s primary responsibility will be to ensure that members are transported by licensed and credentialed transportation providers.

  1. How Do You Join The Intelliride Network Of Transportation Providers?
  • Transportation providers are expected to obtain a valid Medicaid Provider ID number with the Department of Human Services (DHS) Med-QUEST Division (Form 1139).
  • Obtain an approved docket filed with the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC).
  • Submit an interest form to IntelliRide.
  • A member of the IntelliRide team will follow up within three business days of receiving the interest form to review the next steps. This will include an in-depth discussion about driver and vehicle credentialing.
  1. If A Friend Or Family Member Of A HFC Member Provides A Ride To A Medical Appointment, Does The Driver Need To Enrol As An NEMT Provider With Intelliride?

The driver is not expected to enrol as an IntelliRide provider to be reimbursed for mileage, but there is a process for mileage reimbursement that members are expected to follow:

  • Rides with friends of family members must be scheduled with IntelliRide and an IntelliRide mileage reimbursement form must be completed at least 48 hours before the appointment.
  • IntelliRide will do everything possible to accommodate requests submitted less than 48 hours before appointment time but cannot guarantee approval without 48 hour notice.
  • From Aug. 1 until Oct. 30, members can submit mileage reimbursement after a trip has occurred and they can use the county reimbursement form. These are temporary options to give people time to adjust to IntelliRide procedures. Rides after Oct. 30 must be pre-approved for mileage reimbursement and the IntelliRide mileage reimbursement form must be used.
  1. What Documents Do You Need To Become A Provider?

Transportation providers are expected to submit a driver roster listing all drivers that will be assigned trips. All drivers must submit current documentation showing proof of the following:

  • Criminal background check
  • Motor vehicle report
  • Driver license copy
  • Must be 21 years of age or older
  • Pre-employment drug screen
  • Training certificates (i.e. CTAA- PASS certification)
  • HIPAA agreement to safeguard client information
  1. Where Can Counties Find And Submit A Provider Agreement And Business Associate Addendum?

Counties can reach out to IntelliRide directly by calling IntelliRide directly at 1-855-489-4999 or 303-398-2155 (State Relay: 711), or sending email at US.join_our_network@transdev.com

  1. Who Are NEMT Brokers And How Do You Arrange Transportation?

First have it in mind there are two brokers providing NEMT services: LogistiCare LLC and Southeastrans Inc. A member or person acting on behalf of a member is expected to contact the broker serving the county in which he/she lives between the hours of 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday to request NEMT services.

Requests are expected to be made at least three workdays prior to the non-urgent, scheduled appointment. The three-day advance scheduling includes the day of the call but not the day of the appointment.

  1. How Do You Become A NEMT Provider With Georgia Medicaid?

Transportation providers are expected to contact LogistiCare and/or Southeastrans to provide NEMT services to its members.

  1. How Do You Get NEMT Contracts?

Typically, you have to reach your potential partners and start communicating with them. Visit them yourself, send emails, and give calls to offer your NEMT service. Stay proactive! However, you are always expected to bring the proof of your professionalism and reliability in terms of the licenses and certifications.

  1. What Is A Paratransit Service?

Paratransit provides transportation for people with disabilities who are unable to use the regular, fixed route transit service that serves their region. Paratransit more or less provide door-to-door service for people who call to reserve a ride.

  1. How Do NEMT Brokers Use Public Transit?

Generally, brokers have procedures in place to determine whether public transportation is accessible to and appropriate for the member requesting service. Both NEMT brokers can identify electronic route information from public transit providers to determine if a member’s pickup and drop-off locations are on a public transit route.

  1. Does Southeastrans Provide Private Transportation To Appointments?

No, since this is a shared-ride service, it is possible that you will ride with other passengers picked up at or near your pick-up location. Southeastrans offers public transportation vouchers and fuel/gas reimbursement as an alternative.

  1. What Does DHS Have In Place To Ensure Quality Service?
  • Driver requirements related to background checks, drug testing, and training
  • Member resources, such as online scheduling, online complaint submission, and a dedicated member ombudsman
  • A call centre requirement of a 99.7 complaint-free percentage
  • Electronic tracking of rides to better track unsuccessful trips and the timeliness of services
  • Call centre standards to help address call volume during peak hours
  • A transportation provider ombudsman to assist transportation providers with contracting questions and claims processing
  • Network requirements for specialized medical vehicles to ensure access
  • Strong language on penalties and liquidated damages for compliance
  • A full-time NEMT contract monitor to provide onsite review of the NEMT manager’s day-to-day operations and to monitor trends and complaints
  • Transparency and accountability by posting monthly NEMT performance reports
  • A third-party NEMT member advocate to help members navigate the NEMT process and help resolve any issues or complaints
  • A standard that requires no more than one unsuccessful trip per 2,250 scheduled rides and no more than one provider late occurrence per 2,250 scheduled rides
  1. How Is The Quality Of Service Monitored For NEMT?

NEMT staff tends to monitor the quality of service provided, including but not limited to: reviewing various required monthly, quarterly and annual reports; conducting on-site reviews to ensure compliance and possibly riding on a NEMT vehicle to monitor service; and attending broker/provider meetings.

  1. Why Does DHS Issue New Procurement For NEMT Services?

According to reports, Wisconsin State law obligates DHS to procure vendors on a regularly scheduled basis. The procurement process is an opportunity for DHS to continue to improve the program and provide quality controls.

  1. Whom Do You Contact When Starting An NEMT Business?

NEMT businesses can operate small and work only with the local citizens, and this entails that connecting with them with basic NEMT scheduling software is quite imperative. However, it is much more beneficial to start big in terms of communication with service clients since you never know where more requests would come from. So here are your potential partners:

  • Health insurance companies
  • Medical institutions: hospitals, clinics, dialysis centres
  • Non-medical institutions: day-care centres, retirement homes, group homes
  • Brokers (as a contact with the state demand)
  • Private patients
  1. How Does The NEMT Program Operate?

The NEMT program provides transportation through a NEMT Broker System. The process starts when a member calls a call centre to schedule a trip to their healthcare appointment.

  1. How Long Does It Take For Intelliride To Approve A Trip Request?

Trip requests are expected to be scheduled at least 48 hours in advance, whether the member is requesting mileage reimbursement only or the member needs IntelliRide transportation.

  1. What Are The Necessary Licenses To Have Before Starting A NEMT Company In San Antonio Texas?
  1. How Do You Legitimize Your NEMT Business In The Market?

Here is a list of legal standard requirements for NEMT providers:

  • Vehicle licensing with the local Bureau of Motor Vehicles
  • ADA-compliant vehicles (they must be easily accessible for wheelchairs and ambulance carts and they must have medical supplies for passengers, such as oxygen, gurneys, defibrillator, etc.)
  • Registration with your state’s Department of Public Safety that would confirm you can provide transport services
  • Certification from the Department of Human Services (provided that you offer non-emergency ambulance services)
  • Auto and liability insurance
  1. How Long Will Counties Be Able To Bill for NEMT?

Counties should expect to finish processing claims for mileage reimbursements in the Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS) for any NEMT trips from June by mid-August.

  1. When Will the State wide Transition to Intelliride Be Complete?

All county responsibilities end on August 1st.

  1. For How Long Can Members Submit Mileage Reimbursement Paperwork That Was Provided By The County, And Not Intelliride?

Members can submit county paperwork to IntelliRide for mileage reimbursement until Oct. 30. Beginning Oct. 31, members must use the IntelliRide form for mileage reimbursement.

  1. Why Is Colorado Moving To One NEMT Provider For The Whole State?

Have it in mind that expanding management of the NEMT benefit to one state wide broker, IntelliRide, will help the state improve customer service to both its members and the county partners.

Note that by moving to a single state wide vendor, the state is better able to ensure more consistent, streamlined operations and infrastructure, including improved access for members and reduced administrative burden for counties.