Uber, Lyft Launch Efforts to Eliminate Transportation Barriers to Healthcare

The cost will take into account the cost of health care

The ride-hailing service introduced its concierge platform to health-care providers a little over two years ago so doctors' offices and hospitals could order transportation for people.

Health care represents a major B2B opportunity for ride-hailing firms, given the number of patients who have transportation issues that prevent them from getting to their appointments. In April 2017, Lyft announced product improvements and a partnership with the National Association of the Deaf to enhance the driving experience for deaf or hard-of-hearing drivers, and in December, Lyft partnered with Aira to enable visually impaired riders to request rides more efficiently. Providers determine who is eligible based on need, and costs are covered by providers and sometimes defrayed by insurance. Using the same dashboard, multiple rides can be scheduled and managed at the same time.

"The dashboard allows healthcare professionals to order rides for patients going to and from the care they need", writes Uber Health's General Manager Chris Weber. In an effort to remove transportation as a barrier to care, ride-sharing services are using their platforms to bring the ride to the patient.

MedStar Health, NYU Perlmutter Cancer Center, and Yale New Haven Health are among the healthcare organizations utilizing Uber Health as part of a pilot project.

Lyft has always been the second best when compared to Uber. To help solve the problem, the ride-share giant, Uber, has chose to take advantage of what it sees as an opportunity and establish Uber Health.

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What we don't know yet, though, is whether or not Uber Health will be able to offer rides to those persons with disabilities - whether something like the Uber XXL now offered for larger groups, or any other specific types of vehicles, will be available to those using a wheelchair, etc.

The company stressed that Uber Health complies with HIPAA patient privacy laws.

Additionally, the passenger isn't billed for the ride because the providers will cover the cost. It's somewhat of literally the last mile, or the last lock of health care, getting the patient involved and making it easier for patients to get to appointments.

Although there was little to no detailed information regarding billing during the announcement, organizations would be able to easily monitor what they were spending on transportation as well as see monthly billing statements, scheduling and appointments.

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