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What Are Patient Transport Services For?

Sometimes, patients will have to be transferred from a hospital to a medical facility that’s more equipped to take care of their specific needs. If they are physically unable to get themselves to the new location, they will have to rely on a specialized service to drive them there.

This task typically falls to patient transport services. They are non-emergency medical transport companies that exist to help patients move to or from a healthcare facility. Besides driving people to specialized treatment centers, they also convey patients from medical centers in which they were operated upon to nursing homes or recuperation sites for recover. 

This service differs from emergency medical transport because it’s deployed for the routine movement of patients. The vehicles used for this purpose aren’t equipped to the same extent as ambulances that drive people requiring immediate medical attention to treatment centers. 

Who Uses this Service?

Persons who are most likely to need this service include the elderly, who may be too frail to get to nursing homes or recuperation units without some assistance; individuals who are terminally ill and have to be taken to a hospice; the physically challenged; and babies.

Patients who are mentally ill or dealing with a kidney condition could also be shuttled to specialist hospitals if they have been referred to any by their doctor. 

In general, this service is needed by anyone who has to go to a medical care center but is unfit to undertake the journey without assistance. 

How Conducive Is this Service for Patients?

The answer to this question depends on the quality of work done by individual providers of this service. In general, they are expected to make their trips as comfortable as possible for patients onboard their vehicles.

These vehicles are usually vans with some special equipment on board, such as wheelchair ramps, which make it easier to take patients in and care for them while they are on the journey. A couple of persons from the healthcare transport company, including the driver, will be present as well. While they may have some medical training, the primary aim of their interaction with passengers will be to keep them as comfortable as possible, given the specific situation.

How Can You Access this Service?

Patients will have to make arrangements with the service providers at least a few days before the trip. It could also be done on the patient’s behalf by the hospital in which they are currently admitted, especially if the medical transporter is to move the patient to another healthcare center.

Is this Better than the Alternatives?

If it’s possible, patients may prefer to be ridden to and from the hospital by a friend or family member. They could even opt for a taxi or a public service vehicle. 

They are certainly free to use any of those alternatives. But if they need to be looked after by persons trained to take care of them while they are driven to and from a medical center, a patient transport service is a better and safer option.