What is a patient transport service?
A patient transport service is a form of non-emergency medical transport service that is primarily concerned with the movement of patients from or to a specific location in non-emergency cases, or where the need to administer medical treatment is not imperative.
This service is specifically meant to cater to patients that need to from one medical facility to another, or from a specialist facility to a residential living home in the case of seniors.
However, the service may also be used to transport other persons – especially the elderly – from their homes to the hospital for routine appointments or in different applicable medical situations. It is pertinent to highlight that a patient transport service is not a substitute for a regular taxi service. It doesn’t cater to patients that require urgent medical attention or those that need to be moved in haste for a more specialized form of medical treatment.
The service is preferably suited to situations where the patient urgently requires primary medical care and assistance while in transit.
Below are some factors that necessitate the use of a patient transport service;
- The patient’s medical condition requires the care/assistance of support staff during/after the journey. Also, wherever it would be adverse to the patient’s recovery if they travel by an alternate mode of transportation.
- The patient is physically limited in their range of mobility by a medical condition, to an extent where their health or recovery would be in danger if an alternate mode of transportation is used.
- A parent or guardian is accompanying a child being transported.
- The patient is required to be transferred to/from another medical facility.
Advantages of a patient transport service
Less missed medical appointments and checkups: Elderly patients often require routine medical appointments at the hospital. Given their likely frail state and reduced mobility, they can always take advantage of a patient transport service to and from their hospital appointments. During the journey, they can be looked after, and the necessary medication may be administered.
Convenience and safety: Patient transport services ensure that patients are comfortably transported and are taken care of in transit. For patients moving to/from specialized medical facilities, this can prove to be a safe and convenient mode of transportation. The support staff that would accompany them on the trip would also be on hand to offer primary medical care and assistance – this is important where the journey is relatively long, and the patient is not in the best medical condition or is in recovery.
Specialized care service: The driver, vehicle, essential medical equipment, medication, and support staff are all part of a skilled medical transport service designed to suit the needs of the patient. The support staff will be trained and qualified to give essential medical assistance. Similarly, the transport vehicle will also be designed to be wheelchair and stretcher compatible to aid the mobility and movement of the patient.