According to recent studies, approximately 3.5 million adults miss or delay non-emergency medical care annually due to lack of easy access to transportation.
It’s an incredibly costly habit.
Missed appointments cost the U.S. healthcare industry an estimated $150 billion annually. This burden isn’t just a financial drain on the medical system, but also poses a significant risk to patients, who may have technically missed what was then a “nonemergency” appointment, but now has the potential to become a dire situation due to lack of care.
Furthermore, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, the population missing these visits may be particularly susceptible to poorer health status and higher costs of care.
In order to address this issue, there has been a movement to make nonemergency medical transportation (NEMT) more accessible.
NEMT Risks Can Outweigh Benefits
Ride hailing giants have taken steps to position their businesses to be of service to patients and healthcare facilities alike, filling the proverbial gap.
Lyft Inc. announced an integration with Epic, the biggest EHR vendor in the U.S.
Cerner embedded access to Uber Technologies Inc., which boasts 41.8 million users, within their EHR.
While all progress towards making medical care more accessible is positive, this trend takes on a different challenge in the context of 2020s ultimate disruptor, Covid-19.
According to Aurora Mobile, a leading mobile big data solutions platform in China, daily active users on ride sharing apps declined by more than half after the Chinese government declared the coronavirus outbreak.
In the U.S., According to Canaccord Genuity pricing tracker, ride-share fares dropped by 6% month-over-month at the start of the pandemic, likely to incentivize users to continue use.
In April of 2020, the CDC updated guidelines for rideshare, taxi, limo, and drivers-for-hire in light of the outbreak. And, while its comforting to be aware of best practices should a user be in a scenario where they need transportation to medical facilities, it’s understandable that if the appointment is nonemergent, a patient may think it isn’t worth the risk of using a transportation service.
Mobile Imaging: The Patient First Approach
The current burden on healthcare systems doesn’t need to be further exasperated by preventable problems evolving into critical situations due to lack of care.
In order to truly “disrupt” the healthcare industry, making it more patient-centric, we have to think outside the box.
Theodore Levitt, editor of the Harvard Business Review, famously said, “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill, they want a quarter-inch hole.”
We couldn’t agree with Mr. Levitt more.
Healthcare providers don’t want to invest in getting their clients to the appointments on time, they want their patients treated safely and efficiently.
That’s where New Frontier Mobile Diagnostics comes in.
By providing treatment where it’s most convenient for patients, we can limit unnecessary exposures and risks.
In addition, mobile imaging provides increased opportunities for clinics to capture revenue, and eliminates the fees that stack up for patients forced to use outside imaging centers- including facility fees and specialty co-pay expenses.
To learn more about how your practice and patients can benefit from our world-class technicians, best-in-class mobile ultrasound machinery, and industry leading overseeing physicians, contact us today.
We look forward to seeing you on the New Frontier of patient care!