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How to Get Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Contracts

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.