Transport is an essential element of NEMT business. Appropriate transport is what your customers need. However, you are not only looking at satisfying their requirements but also you need to make sure that your vehicles are ADA compliant. Americans with Disability Act as well as ADA Standards for Accessible Design give extensive guidance on how to pick the most suitable vehicles for this business. Although the requirements for vehicles vary in every state, there is a core set of rules applied everywhere. Every vehicle should have a registration, insurance and comply with local regulations. It should also be inspected and have maintenance files. Note that it is not a requirement to buy a brand new vehicle. It is possible to buy a new or used van. Thus, it is vital to have the vehicles inspected and document every check-up. With the vehicles, some concomitant medical supplies might be needed (oxygen tank, gurney, dialysis machine etc.). Having ADA compliant vehicles is a sign of security and safety, thus it makes your business more competitive and reputable for customers.
Criteria For Selecting NEMT vehicle
The transport you want to purchase depends on the type of services you want to focus on or of course, you might get all of them. The most suitable options are minivans, full-size vans, and buses. Again, it will depend on what your budget is and what you want to achieve. The particularly important characteristics of NEMT vehicles are seating capacity, wheelchair access, occupancy, gurney access, wheelbase. Depending on what kind of transport you purchased a manufactured or accessibility converted one, you need to check the correspondence with ADA. In particular, if you are dealing with the converted one, check the Mobility aid accessibility section. As an example, regulations require to ensure slip resistance in the vehicle and door height for vehicles more than 22 feet in length shall be at least 68 inches, etc. The other option is to purchase the ADA compliant vehicle. Making sure that your fleet is in the right state is crucial because any violations will result in unbudgeted expenses.
What ADA Compliant Vehicles Are on the Market?
As long as every item of your fleet is meeting the accessibility standards, it does not have to be brand new. Looking into the types of cars available, one should think of the purpose. Potential customers of the nemt business are patients of nursing homes, hospitals, group homes. Depending on the location you are operating in, choose the type of vehicle that can cover the wide range of patient’s needs. Bear in mind that the safety of passengers and drivers comes first, and it should be the priority in choosing the vehicles.
Wheelchair Accessible Vans
Ford Transit is a full-sized, wheelchair and gurney van and comes with a variety of flooring plans available. The seating capacity is up to 8 passengers and 1 or 2 wheelchairs.
RamProMaster has a lift capacity of 800 pounds.it comes in 2 lengths and 2 roof heights. The innovative flooring system also provides for seating options that can be quickly switched if needed.
Rear access wheelchair ramps
Dodge Grand Caravan Legend II equipped to seat 2 wheelchairs and up to 7 passengers. Legend II model has the kneel system which allows the user to control the height to which the van lowers. It also has a removable passenger seat which brings more convenience for a wheelchair user.
Ford Transit Connect is designed to seat 5 passengers and 1 wheelchair. This type of van is a perfect match for nursing homes.
Toyota Sienna is a convenient minivan due to the widest ramps and load capacities which are 36 inches and 1000 pounds correspondingly. By the way, the ADA requirement states that Ramps less than 30 inches should not support a load of 300 pounds. The minivan has a wheelchair capacity and in total can seat 6 passengers. The great advantage of the ramp in this minivan lays in the fact that there is no need for electronics to maintain it.
Ford Transit 150 serves as an example of a gurney van. It includes gurney securement hardware and a gurney bracket holder. The van is also compliant with ADA Interior Sign Kit.
A reliable nemt dispatch and billing software is irreplaceable assistance in your business. Even if you start with a couple of vehicles, billing is an issue for drivers and managers. The time you spend on paperwork could be spent on looking for solutions on how to maintain your fleet in better condition. ISI Technology aids with optimizing your ride expenses by finding the right transport for the customer and giving you the best experience with the transport software.