Uber has made life more convenient for countless passengers all across the United States.
It has become a mobility solution for underserved communities by providing passengers with a means to get from point A to B.
It has also given passengers a safe alternative to impaired driving.
Overall, Uber has changed the way we think about transportation and shaken up an age-old industry that was ripe for disruption.
So what’s next on Uber’s agenda?
Today, we’re going to take a look at Uber Health — Uber’s solution to getting patients to and from doctor’s appointments.
We’ll go over how it works, the benefits it provides, and anything else patients and health-care providers need to know about this service.
What Is Uber Health?
Uber Health is a transportation solution for health-care professionals to get patients, guests, and caregivers to and from appointments.
The service is similar to Uber’s standard service, but it’s HIPAA compliant and provides privacy and security for passengers’ personal information.
The difference between Uber’s regular service and Uber Health is that the latter is managed by health-care professionals rather than the passengers themselves.
Instead of a passenger scheduling and paying for a ride, health-care organizations can set up rides on their behalf and handle all the logistics and payment.
Finding reliable transportation to medical appointments is a huge pain point for patients.
Over three million Americans miss their medical appointments each year because they aren’t able to secure a ride.
Even more astounding is that if patients don’t have a ride, they’ll end up not going to their appointments.
No-show rates are as high as 30% across the United States.
Uber Health provides patients with a reliable source of transportation that they can count on for non-emergency medical care.
The service reduces the number of no-shows to appointments, creates fewer cancellations, and aims to help patients get to their appointments on time.
Let’s dive into how Uber Health works and see how it can help health-care organizations streamline their transportation needs.
How Does Uber Health Work?
The first step is signing up your health-care organization.
You can start the process by heading to this Uber sign-up page.
You’ll then need to fill out your account application, which consists of providing a business name, a valid business email address, and payment information.
Once you agree to the terms and conditions and the privacy statement, you’ll need to wait for Uber to approve your account.
Approval should come through within five business days.
After you’re approved, you can start booking rides for patients.
The next step is logging into your account and transferring passenger information into the Uber platform.
You can then create rides for patients by entering their name and pick-up and drop-off locations.
There are two ways to send a ride to patients.
The first is a redeemable ride.
With these types of rides, you’ll set a date, and the patient will receive a text message the day before with instructions and trip details.
At any time throughout that day, the patient can decide when they need to be picked up and will respond to the text message to confirm their pick-up.
The other way to send a ride to patients is to schedule rides needed immediately or at a set time at a later date.
With this option, an Uber driver will immediately be called to the patient’s location or will arrive at the scheduled day and time.
When the ride is on its way, the patient will still receive a text or phone call confirmation.
Once the passenger is dropped off, health-care organizations don’t have to do anything else besides paying the bill.
All billing will be sent to the organization at the end of the month and the patient won’t need to worry about paying.
Now, let’s take a look at why health-care organizations would want to use Uber Health.
Benefits of Uber Health
Uber Health simplifies patient transportation and gives health-care providers an alternative to traditional medical transportation options.
It also provides the following benefits to doctor’s offices across the U.S.
Ride coordinators can set up rides to be used immediately or up to 30 days in advance.
This enables coordinators to reserve rides for follow-up appointments while patients are still at their health care facility.
Plus, the facility can schedule and track all patient rides at once in real-time.
Through the Uber Health dashboard, health-care professionals can see ride details for all their bookings, including pick-up time, drop-off time, and price for each fare.
Simplified and Cost-Effective Billing
By using the Uber Health platform, health-care organizations can cut costs and have a transparent pricing view for all their patients’ rides.
All patients rides will be located in one place and can easily be tracked and billed. Instead of sending payments separately for each ride, Uber will create a monthly, itemized bill.
The Uber Health service was designed with patient confidentiality, privacy, and safety in mind.
All Uber Health rides are HIPAA compliant and protect all personal information.
To top it off, there are experts on hand waiting to answer any questions or concerns patients and providers have about meeting HIPAA standards.
Uber Health makes it incredibly easy for patients to receive rides to appointments.
In fact, patients don’t even need to have a smartphone, let alone the Uber app, to receive a ride. Instead, ride details can be texted or delivered via mobile phone or landline to the passenger.
Passengers won’t need to give drivers an address or even provide payment.
All of the planning will be left to the health-care professional, so passengers don’t need to worry about a thing.
Uber Health FAQ
If you’re a health care provider, patient, or Uber driver and still have questions regarding Uber Health, here are a few common questions people have.
1. How much does Uber Health cost?
Uber Health costs the same as Uber’s standard service.
The price is determined by factors like the distance driven, the time of the ride, and the current demand for rides.
There will be no additional charge to health-care organizations, and patients will take the same rides as general Uber passengers.
As mentioned above, all rides will be billed on a monthly basis.
2. Where is Uber Health available?
Uber Health is available in every market where Uber’s standard service is available.
If you’d like to see every city where Uber is available, you can check out Uber’s website.
1. Is Uber Health the same as Uber?
Uber Health is pretty much the same as a standard Uber service.
The difference is that your health-care provider will set up all your rides and handle the payment, so you won’t be able to reserve an Uber Health ride from your personal Uber app.
Your personal information will be protected and follow all HIPAA standards.
2. Do you need to pay for your ride?
No, you won’t need to pay your Uber driver.
You can leave your cash at home, because your health-care provider will take care of it.
3. Can I trust the Uber Health service?
All Uber drivers go through a background check on a routine basis.
You’ll also be given information about your driver and their vehicle beforehand.
Before getting in the car, you should confirm the color of the vehicle, the make and model, license plate, and your driver’s name.
1. How can I become an Uber Health driver?
If you already drive for Uber and would like to become an Uber Health driver, go to your driver account settings and enable Uber Health rides.
Then you can start accepting rides from health-care providers around town. It’s as simple as that, since there are no additional requirements for Uber drivers.
If you’d like to become an Uber driver, you can check out the driver requirements here.
Time for Your Check-Up
Uber has already blazed the trail for ridesharing and disrupted many aspects of the transportation industry.
Health-care transportation is the latest novel rideshare solution it has brought to the table.
Using Uber to get passengers to and from their appointments is a convenient and affordable solution.
If your health-care organization is using a traditional form of transportation, like a third-party shuttle service, it may be time to start thinking about what Uber brings to the table.
You can cut costs, schedule appointments far in advance, and have all your patient details in one place. If you’re interested, make sure to check out Uber Health’s site.
You can also find more information at our definitive guide to Uber.