A medical transportation driver is tasked with operating a vehicle that transports passengers to and from medical appointments or helps to move medical cargo across locations. These drivers are most often hired by either hospitals or companies that offer transportation services to healthcare facilities.
A medical transportation driver may work in either an emergency or a non-emergency capacity, but it most often depends on their placement. Note that the primary role of a person working as a medical transportation driver is to operate a van or transit from one place to another, to transport patients, healthcare professionals, lab specimens, and medical documents.
As a non-emergency medical transport driver, your job involves picking up patients from their homes and transporting them to medical appointments, then waiting until their appointments are through to drive them back home. Note that if a patient needs to be helped into their house, or other destination, the driver will also offer a helping hand and ensure their safety.
Truth be told, patients who can barely move on their own will always require help getting into their final destination, be it the doctor’s office, or their home. Therefore, patience and empathy are necessary virtues for medical transportation drivers.
Most medical transportation companies provide their drivers with phones to ensure that they can report the time they pick up patients and when they have successfully dropped them off at their destination. Every driver will have a schedule for the next day, and before they leave work, they are meant to know all the places they are instructed to pick patients, and the right places to drop them off.
When the driver cannot make it to an appointment on time, they are expected to notify the client of their late arrival and also inform their dispatch to make room for other plans and alternatives. Ideally, the job of the driver in a medical transportation company can be quite challenging and that is why an individual of high integrity is preferred.
Basic Duties and Responsibilities of Medical Transportation Drivers
While these will surely differ based on the services offered by the medical transportation company, here are the basic duties and responsibilities of medical transportation drivers;
- Leverage standard maps or the GPS to find short and safe routes to destinations.
- Drive assigned vehicles along predetermined routes, and guarantee the safety and well-being of all onboard.
- Carry out pre-trip inspections on assigned vehicles to validate that they are in good working order.
- Make vehicles ready for transport by ensuring that patients’ sitting and lying down areas are cleared.
- Help medical staff members ensure patients get on board the van or transit, and also verify that they are properly strapped in.
- Take instructions from dispatch teams concerning destinations and timelines, and make sure both are taken into account when making deliveries of transports.
- Help members of the medical staff in unloading patients, samples, and documents in a safe manner.
- Always give updates to dispatch units in terms of the status of deliveries and transports.
- Verify that assigned vehicles are properly parked in their assigned areas/spots at the end of the shift.
- Carry out both preventative and regular maintenance on assigned vans.
- Provide supervisors with information on any issues or problems that may surface during regular vehicle checkups.
Education and Qualifications for Medical Transportation Drivers
Although every state has specific qualifications for medical transportation drivers, here are the most common education and experience requirements for medical transportation drivers in the United States.
- Drivers are expected to hold a currently valid driver’s license, a chauffeur’s license, and also have an excellent driving record.
- They need to be very fluent in English
- They must have completed their company’s training program, especially in passenger assistance techniques, sensitivity training, map reading, or demonstrated competence based on previous employment experience.
- They must have completed the CPR training offered by a local emergency medical training facility or have a certificate showing prior successful completion of the same training.
Physical Requirements for Medical Transportation Drivers
Aside from the requirements and qualifications mentioned above, there are certain physical requirements expected of medical transportation drivers, and they include;
- Ability to lift, push, pull, and position patients. Should be able to lift up to 100 lbs. without assistance.
- Exposure to a wide range of weather conditions.
- Ability to carry out considerable reaching, stooping, and bending.
- Hearing and vision abilities should be within the normal range to drive safely and to observe and communicate with patients.
The primary job of a medical transportation driver is to guarantee that passengers reach their destinations safely. However, to be a medical transportation driver, you are expected to have all the required documents, like a driver’s license, a certificate for First Aid, and another one showing you are qualified to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Note that these two certificates are necessary just in case a patient needs any type of first aid.