Finding transportation for medical needs can be difficult, but mobile apps Uber and Lyft are both looking to offer health transportation services that will provide a ride to doctor appointments or the hospital for patients in need.
Mobile health apps have increased in popularity over the years as convenient ways for people to gather important health or fitness data, communicate with doctors, or arrange healthcare services. Now recent announcements from mobile apps Uber and Lyft have created excitement among the healthcare industry. Both ride-sharing apps are looking to help patients find rides to the doctor or hospital by expanding their platforms to include health transportation services.
Finding a ride to doctor appointments or to receive medical care can be a major concern for patients. Doctors can see up to 30% of appointments missed, which costs the healthcare industry billions of dollars each year.
Uber has created a new Uber Health platform that would let your doctors or medical facilities arrange health transportation services for you so that you could get a ride to appointments or for necessary care. Your doctor would also pay for your transportation.
You wouldn’t need to use the mobile app version of Uber either, as the company stated they intend to allow for notification options via text messaging or even phone calls.
Uber Health has already undergone over eight months of trials using a beta version that about 100 healthcare organizations tested.
Lyft is following suit with its Lyft Concierge platform that also allows your doctor or healthcare organizations to arrange and pay for your ride to see them. You’ll receive notifications about Lyft health transportation services through text messages.
Lyft already has thousands of partners throughout the healthcare industry, including health insurance network Blue Cross Blue Shield and electronic health records company Allscripts.
The more recent partnership between Lyft and Allscripts will expand reach of the Lyft Concierge platform to 2,500 hospitals, 45,000 physician practices, 180,000 physicians, and 7 million patients.
Lyft healthcare transportation services have already found success when tested by certain healthcare organizations. For example, CareMore Health System reported that Lyft reduced patient wait time for health transportation and was cheaper on average. American Medical Response saw complaints reduced by half after a partnership with Lyft.
Although these mobile health ride-hailing programs are still in early phases, a study done by the University of Kansas found that use of ambulances was down by 7% in 43 states due to increased use of ride-hailing transportation services like those offered by Uber and Lyft.
One area of concern is lack of wheelchair accessible vehicles in the fleets of both Uber and Lyft. Uber Health is currently running trials with such vehicles in a few select cities, so it’s possible you may see an improvement when it comes to offerings for the disabled and handicapped in the near future.
The team at CareSync understands how important it is that each individual is able to find transportation to meet their healthcare needs. Our Health Assistants often work with our members and their caregivers to help find the health transportation services they need to safely get to the doctor or hospital.
If you’re interested in more information about the benefits we offer our members, their families, and caregivers, please click here to visit our website.
For more information about health transportation services from mobile apps Uber and Lyft, check out these resources:
- Why Uber and Lyft want to take you to the hospital
- Uber, Lyft try solving one of medicine's biggest problems: getting people to appointments
- Lyft follows Uber further into healthcare market with rides for patients
- Uber is the latest to join big tech’s race into healthcare
- Lyft doubles down on helping patients get rides to the doctor