Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Lantern Crest – New Resort Senior Living in East San Diego County

Monday, March 30th, 2015

What’s up with that “castle-like” structure that’s been growing on the Santee hillside? You know, the complex that has been under construction for the past year…The one right at the intersection of the 52 and the 67 in Santee. Several of us know it as Lantern Crest, a “Full Service” senior living facility. Several clients have asked me if I knew anything about the facility, or if I had any clients who call the place home. I have not, and my curiosity got the best of me last week, so I drove right in and I decided to stop by and do some investigating.

Luxurious Resort Style Complex

I approached the front desk which was at the far side of a beautiful lobby. At the center of the lobby is one of those cascading water fountains that seem to defy gravity. A definite eye-catcher which looks like something you would experience in a Las Vegas-style luxury resort. I asked the woman at the front desk if I could collect some basic information regarding the complex. She promptly introduced me to Robbi Hogan, the Community Marketing Director.

Two Separate Buildings Define the Complex

Robbi explained to me that the complex is actually composed of two separate facilities. “The Ridge” at Lantern Crest is the original building that was completed on the property about 2 years ago. The Ridge accommodates both assisted living and memory care and is available to residents age 62 and older. The newest building, “The Pointe” at Lantern Crest, hosted it’s Grand Opening this past January. The Point is an independent living facility available to residents age 55 and older. Living accommodations include efficient studios, 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom units with prices starting at $3,390 per month. If you are able to act soon, Lantern Crest is currently offering a “Spring Special” promotion. This special waives the normal $3,500 community fee for those who move in to their Assisted Living or Memory Care programs before April 30st 2015.

The Inspiration for Lantern Crest

In a message from the founder of Lantern Crest, Michael Grant, he reflects upon his own life experience. When it became time to evaluate assisted living facilities for his own father, he discovered that available choices had very little life or vibrancy. They were dark, old, and somewhat institutional. When the chance to develop Lantern Crest came along, he saw it as an opportunity to offer our parents and grandparents a better way to live. “Lantern Crest is a way to give our parents and grandparents a great home and lifestyle”. “I decided that Lantern Crest should be affordable luxury for our parents, and a beautiful place to live, full of life and vibrancy with all the amenities, features and services they could want or need.”

Featured Services and Amenities

  • Weekly housekeeping
  • Weekly Linen service
  • All utilities & cable (except personal phone and internet)
  • 62 meals per month
  • Daily scheduled activities
  • Pet friendly
  • Scheduled transportation with their own mini-bus
  • State of the art movie theater
  • Fitness center
  • Beauty and barber shop
  • Arts & Crafts center & poker room
  • Ice cream parlor
  • Latitude 32 bar & Grill
  • Miniature golf
  • Library & computer room

In addition to all the above, those who reside at “The Pointe”, each residence includes the following:

  • Full service kitchen
  • Washer and dryer
  • Balconies or patios
  • Other “Light Assistance” services for a modest charge.

Contact Information

Lantern Crest is located at the intersection of HWY 52 and HWY 67 in Santee.

The address is: 400 Lantern Crest Way, Santee, CA 92071




Lantern Crest is a sparkling new resort style senior living facility in Santee, CA. If you or a family member is considering options for Senior Living in San Diego county, this place should be on the top of your list of must see facilities.

The Ensign Group Completes Acquisition of Shea Family Care in San Diego, California

Friday, February 20th, 2015

Beginning early last year we started to hear more chatter regarding mergers and acquisitions, or “M&A”, within the senior housing and rehabilitation industry. Perhaps some of our readers have noticed that several nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and hospices have changed their names, or the logo at the front entrance? We certainly have in our market. Headline articles substantiate this trend.

Senior Housing News, just release an article titled “The Top 10 Senior Housing Trends for 2015”. Topping the list was “M&A Accelerates As Efficiencies Are Needed for Shareholder Returns”. A survey conducted by GE Capital reports: “Spurred by changes in the post-acute environment and improving industry fundamentals, U.S. senior housing and care investors and providers are aggressively pursuing a variety of expansion strategies.”

Local M&A activity in our marketplace is demonstrated by the actual press release from The Ensign Group, INC., a prestigious, publicly traded corporation headquartered in Southern California:

MISSION VIEJO, Calif., Dec. 3, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Ensign Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:ENSG), the parent company of the Ensign™ group of skilled nursing, rehabilitative care services, home health care, hospice care, home care, assisted living and urgent care companies, announced today that it completed its previously announced acquisition of nine skilled nursing and assisted living operations, a home health agency and a private home care business from Shea Family Care, the largest provider of a complete continuum of post-acute healthcare services in the San Diego market.

The acquisition was effective on December 1, 2014 and adds 643 skilled nursing beds and 68 assisted living beds across 9 operations, a Medicare and Medi-Cal certified home health agency and a private-pay home care business, all located in San Diego County, California.

“We are very pleased to have completed this significant transaction and we welcome a wonderful team of caregivers to the Ensign family,”

“Our strategic expansion in the San Diego market allows us to serve the full continuum of post-acute care needs of San Diegans, whether that care takes place in our facilities or their homes,” said Christopher Christensen, Ensign’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Providing this full range of services,” Christensen continued, “gives us a unique opportunity to improve outcomes and reduce rehospitalization rates for those patients who entrust us with their care.”

The management and staff of All Points Assisted Transportation wish to congratulate the Ensign Group on their recent acquisitions, and welcome their expanded presence into the San Diego area.

Senior Loneliness and Isolation

Friday, February 6th, 2015

Feelings of loneliness and isolation can lead to serious consequences for the health of a growing number of seniors and individuals with chronic illnesses. Social contacts tend to decrease as we age for a variety of reasons. These reasons may include retirement, the death of friends and family, and lack of mobility due to a disability.

We witness first hand, the issue of senior isolation every day. The vast majority of our trips are for seniors and person’s with medical disabilities, who are the core population subject to loneliness and isolation. It’s unfortunate, but many seniors actually look forward to their doctor’s visit and enjoy a chance to escape the monotonous life at home. They get a chance to see the outside world just a little.

All Points Assisted Transportation promotes senior outings with our core clients every chance we can. During the holidays for instance, we offer discounted pricing to seniors for a social outing. Recently we promoted social tours of neighborhood Christmas lights displays.

“It’s so heartwarming to see the faces of seniors as we are able to take them out on a trip, especially when we get to do something they enjoy.” says Melissa P., a recent driver addition to our company. If any of our private clients, or those from nursing homes, or assisted care facilities has a request for a social trip, we are always eager to provide very competitive quotes. Often drivers will donate their own time to promote more social transportation events.

Statistics on Senior Isolation:

According to the U.S. Census Bureau 11 million, or 28% of people aged 65 and older, lived alone in 2010. As people get older, their likelihood of living alone only increases. Additionally, more older adults do not have children, reports the AARP, and that means fewer family members to provide company and care, as those adults become seniors.

Referring isolated older adults to senior centers, activity programs, and transportation services can go a long way toward creating valuable connections and reducing isolation. According to reports from the National Council on Aging, reduced isolation can improve a person’s economic security and their ability to live healthy, independent lives.”

Feelings of Loneliness Can Negatively Affect Both Physical and Mental Health

  • Loneliness contributes to cognitive decline and risk of dementia, and loneliness is a major risk factor for depression.
  • Transportation challenges can lead to social isolation. According to the AARP, “life expectancy exceeds safe driving expectancy after age 70 by about six years for men and 10 years for women.” Yet, 41% of seniors do not feel that the transportation support in their community.
  • Lonely people are more likely to engage in unhealthy behavior such as poor diet, lack of physical activity, as well as smoking and excessive use of alcohol.
  • Social isolation in seniors is linked to long-term illness. A 2010 study in Psychology and Aging identified a direct link to increased blood pressure, as well as chronic lung disease and arthritis.
  • Geographical isolation can lead to social isolation. This can prevent seniors from receiving benefits and services that can improve healthy independent lives, reports the National Council on Aging.

Ways to Minimize Isolation and Loneliness:

“We evolved to be a social species”, says Dr. Cacioppo, a neuroscientist at the University of Chicago. “It’s hard-wired into our brains, and when we don’t meet that need, it can have physical and neurological effects.” Simply telling seniors to engage in more social activities may not be enough. Considering our loved ones’ needs as individuals is a valuable first step to figuring out how to prevent or combat isolation.

Actions recommended to combat isolation and loneliness include:

  • Living in a community situation can be an effective barrier to loneliness, and most senior communities specifically promote wellness through diet and exercise programs.
  • Volunteering can reduce social isolation. Seniors have a unique skill set and unique abundance of life experience to contribute to their communities. There are plenty of opportunities tailor-made for seniors interested in volunteering.
  • Take a class, preferably one that stimulates learning, training, and as well as promotes exercise.
  • Learn about social media. Use technology to improve, not replace, direct interactions with others.
  • Physical activity, particularly group exercise programs such as dancing and yoga, can reduces senior isolation and improve overall wellness.
  • Take a field trip, a day excursion, see a friend, or go site seeing!


Please be sensitive to the social needs of an aging or disabled loved one. Feel free to contact All Points Assisted Transportation to inquire about a social trip to see friends and relatives, or to schedule a shopping excursion…or even a trip to the beach! Social outings are our favorite kinds of transports.

Major Trends for 2015 in Senior Housing and Rehabilitation

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015


With regularity, when a new year begins, predictable changes occur within our NEMT business. Often a rollout of a new Medicare or Medicaid insurance plan takes place, or a new service contract takes effect. The result – many new members are added to our transports, and many previous members move on to receive benefits from other insurance programs and providers. We at “All Points” welcome the new arrivals to our services, and we will miss those who have moved on. The “insurance churn” effect is part of our business just like the tides are part of the seashore.

This post, however, is focused on a more recent and major trend for 2015 that has captured the attention of many observers of the health care industry.

Merger and Acquisition Trend within the Senior Housing Market

Beginning early last year we started to hear more chatter regarding mergers and acquisitions, or “M&A”, within the senior housing and rehabilitation industry. I have been reading several articles regarding predictions for 2015 with regard to senior housing and rehabilitation segment, and I would like to share some of the results.

Senior Housing News Report

Senior Housing News, just released an article discussing “The Top 10 Senior Housing Trends for 2015”. The very first item mentioned on their list states:

#1) M&A Accelerates As Efficiencies Are Needed for Shareholder Returns

“The course of frenzied mergers and acquisitions reached more than $16 billion in 2014 and will continue into 2015 as both not-for-profit and for-profit providers and service providers are driven to evaluate combinations by any number of factors including.”

  • Relative consensus that reimbursements will remain flat
  • Continued rising pressure on operating and overhead costs
  • Uncertainty of regulatory and audit processes
  • Increasing compliance complexity with industry regulations
  • Continued low cost of capital

“Given these factors, the trend for more M&A (within the senior housing segment) is almost a certainty, but are there more complex opportunities that may yield greater long-term results yet are complicated from a systems, personnel and culture standpoint.”

The article concludes with: “Regardless, M&A discussions and thoughts will be on the minds of almost every industry participant in 2015.”

GE Capital Survey Results

“Spurred by changes in the post-acute environment and improving industry fundamentals, U.S. senior housing and care investors and providers are aggressively pursuing a variety of expansion strategies.” James Seymour, senior managing director of GE Capital, Healthcare Financial Services’ real estate financing team states that senior housing investors expect to acquire even more health care real estate in the coming year as they look to growth primarily through acquisition. And despite an anticipated rise in interest rates as well as more regulatory oversight, they are expecting business performance to improve further.

Such are the findings of a survey conducted in September 2014 by GE Capital among 150 senior housing executives. The executives were surveyed via email on their concerns and plans for the coming year in senior housing. Largely they are bullish on the opportunity that the sector continues to present, with several shifts in their attention versus years past.

“Acquisition activity has continued to be strong,” says James Seymour. “This is driven by a couple of factors: one, the strength of the industry and overriding demographics. Combine that with an environment where interest rates are pretty low and that makes for a good economy for acquirers.”

Among those surveyed by GE Capital, 67% said their primary growth strategy in the next year is to buy or merge with existing properties or operators, and 26% said they will upgrade and revitalize existing properties. Due to their demand for acquisitions, more than half said the most important financing they seek will be acquisition financing, with 31% reporting they are likely to seek construction financing.

Opportunity or Challenge

But an opportunity—or challenge—is also rising in the shift of providers toward working with larger health care systems to improve health care delivery overall.

“To some it’s an opportunity and to others it’s a threat,” Seymour says. “All the changes are about reducing the cost of the health care system. Operators who either don’t have the capital or bandwidth or acumen are probably those that will end up being sellers in the next few years.”


As we are providers of transportation services to a customer base largely comprised of clientele residing in the senior housing environment, we can only act as spectators as the mergers and acquisitions take place and the trend plays out. All Points Assisted Transportation pledges the finest personalized service to our clients regardless of whether they reside in their own home, a locally owned board and care facility, or a chain of skilled nursing facilities owned by a multi-national conglomerate.

Growth of Ambulatory Surgery Centers

Monday, December 15th, 2014

Transporting patients to and from local surgery centers is a growing source of business activity for a Non-Emergency Medical Transportation company such as ours. This report is designed to help define the role of the Ambulatory Surgery Center in the healthcare industry.

What are Ambulatory Surgery Centers and why are they Significant?

According to a report prepared for the ASC Coalition, ambulatory surgery centers, (ASCs), are health care facilities that offer patients the convenience of having surgeries and procedures performed safely outside of the hospital setting. Since their inception more than four decades ago, ASCs have demonstrated an exceptional ability to improve quality and service while simultaneously reducing costs. At a time when most developments in health care services and technology typically come with a higher price tag, ASCs stand out as an exception to the rule.

What Procedures are Performed at an ASC?

Among the most common procedures, were colonoscopy (27%), upper gastrointestinal endoscopy (10%), lens and cataract surgery (10%), and pain management procedures (5%). About half of the total population of patients were 60 and older, with 22% between 60 and 69, 18% between 70 and 79, and 10% were 80 or older.

ASCs Provide Care at Significant Cost Savings

Not only are ASCs focused on ensuring that patients have the best surgical experience possible, they also provide cost-effective care that save the government , third party payors and patients money. According to the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association,

If just half of the eligible surgical procedures moved from hospital outpatient departments to ASCs, Medicare would save an additional $2.4 billion a year or $24 billion over the next 10 years. Likewise, Medicaid and other insurers benefit from lower prices for services performed in the ASC setting. For example, a Medicare beneficiary could pay as much as $496 in coinsurance for a cataract extraction procedure performed in a hospital department, whereas that same beneficiary’s co-payment in the ASC would be only $195.

Non-hospital Ownership

The majority of ambulatory surgery centers are owned by physicians, or by physician partnerships. As of 2011physician ownership was approaching 80% of all ASCs. The physician owned healthcare model allows the following efficiencies:

  • More intense and better focused quality control processes since ASCs offer a single setting, and smaller space and smaller number of operating rooms.
  • Allows patients to bring concerns directly to the physicians involved, rather than hospital administrators.
  • Physicians can personally guide innovation strategies and quality control initiatives.

Benefits of Medical Technology Advancements

Technological advancement has allowed a growing range of procedures to be performed safely on an outpatient basis. Faster acting and more effective anesthetics and less invasive techniques, such as arthroscopy, have driven ASC growth. Procedures that only a few years ago required major incisions, long-acting anesthetics, and extended convalescence can now be performed through closed techniques utilizing short-acting anesthetics, and with minimal recovery time.

92% Satisfaction Rate

As a result, patients say they have a 92% satisfaction rate with both the care and service they receive from Ambulatory Surgical Centers.

Are Ambulatory Surgery Centers Safe?

In the wake of the surgery-related death of comedian Joan Rivers, patient-safety leaders and some physicians are calling on outpatient surgery centers to carefully select elderly patients eligible for surgery and encouraging patients to question the qualifications of physicians performing the procedures.

Surgery carries risk for everyone, but older adults are more likely to have multiple health conditions that can affect how their body responds to even minor surgical procedures. “If something goes slightly wrong, it’s much more likely to turn into a big problem in an older person than a younger person,” said Dr. Jonathan Flacker, chief of geriatrics and gerontology at Emory University and a spokesman for the American Geriatrics Society.


The growth of Ambulatory Surgery Centers has been remarkable the past several years, and from the standpoint of our company, the results are overwhelmingly positive. All Points Assisted Transportation would like to thank the ASCs in our area for their contributions to the community.

Don’t Let Immobility Prevent You From Enjoying The Holidays!

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

There is nothing quite like spending the holidays with family and friends. Most of us take this privilege for granted, but there are many people who don’t have this opportunity, due to their age, an illness, immobility, or limited transportation options. The holidays are meant for us to appreciate our good fortune and help those who are less fortunate. If you or someone you know is unable to visit with family and friends this holiday season for any of these reasons, we would like you to know that there are options available to you.

At All Points Assisted Transportation, we don’t just provide transportation to and from medical appointments. We also provide transportation for elderly or wheelchair-bound people who need to perform everyday tasks like shopping, running errands, and of course, visiting with family and friends. We offer this service at a competitive and affordable rate. We also allow a family member or caretaker to ride along at no additional cost.

We believe that everyone has the right to live a more fulfilling life no matter age, income, or health status. Our mission is to help improve the quality of life for persons with limited mobility or lack of transportation. There is nothing like having the freedom and independence to pursue the things in life that make us happy, and that is what we are all about.

If you or someone you know is having difficulty getting around, but would like to spend some quality time with their friends and family this holiday season, contact us at All Points Assisted Transportation, and we will do everything in our power to help make that happen, so they can enjoy the holidays too.

Have a safe and happy holiday season!

Your friends at All Points Assisted Transportation.

How NEMT Services Benefit Medicaid Recipients

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

Barriers To Accessing Healthcare

Every year, millions of Americans miss or delay preventative medical care due to their lack of access to safe and reliable transportation. Research has consistently proven that transportation is one of the most common barriers facing low-income Americans in accessing timely and necessary medical care because many of them simply lack the disposable income needed to own a vehicle or have access to affordable public transit in order to get to or from medical appointments.

  • Approximately 3.6 Million Americans miss or delay medical care because of transportation issues.
  • Approximately 950,000 children miss or delay medical care because of transportation issues.
  • $367 per person is saved when providing NEMT for prenatal care.

The Medicaid non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) benefit fills these various access gaps by providing the least costly, but appropriate method of transportation services. Please note than in my home state of California, “Medi-Cal” is the designated name of the Medicaid program. We will use the term Medicaid for the remainder of this blog since it is a national program. Throughout the nation, a network of taxis, vans and public transit systems exist for Medicaid beneficiaries that provide the means to get to and from their necessary medical appointments.

The Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) established transportation as a mandatory benefit in order to provide consistent and efficient access to early intervention/preventive medical care for disadvantaged Medicaid recipients who would otherwise have no means of accessing healthcare services. As a result, providing access to preventative treatment prior to escalating healthcare needs has proven to be a less costly and more effective means of keeping low income, elderly, and disabled recipients out of hospitals and nursing homes; allowing such individuals to remain viable members of the community and live healthier and independent lives while lowering overall health care costs.

Return on Investment

The federal requirement concerning medical transportation assurance is based upon recognition from past experience in Medicaid that unless needy individuals can actually get to and from providers of services, the entire goal of a state Medicaid program is compromised. Healthcare costs would escalate rapidly with low-income individuals ending up in high cost emergency rooms via ambulance services at 15 times the cost of routine transportation. On average, NEMT is utilized by only 10 percent of the total Medicaid population and represents approximately 1 percent of total Medicaid expenditures.

With that said, measuring the benefits of providing access to transportation is far more difficult than measuring its costs. Nonetheless, studies have consistently shown that treatment programs that include transportation to increase appointment attendance reported positive results, including fewer missed appointments, reduced length of stay, and fewer emergency room visits. A study conducted by Florida State University concluded that if only one percent of the medical trips funded resulted in the avoidance of an emergency room hospital visit, the payback to the State would be 1108%, or about $11.08 for each dollar the State invested in its medical transportation program.

When viewed in the broader context of comprehensive healthcare reform, the assurance of such access to medical transportation is consistent with the law’s intent to provide Medicaid coverage for all low-income American citizens and is considered to be a primary component of an efficient and effective health care delivery system. This, in turn, is key to the effective management of escalating medical costs as well as addressing general health care inefficiencies for this population.

In essence, Medicaid’s transportation benefit serves as the life blood of our nation’s publicly funded health care system, allowing our country’s most vulnerable families to access critical medical services. It also lessens the financial burden on state governments by avoiding unnecessary emergency room visits, ambulance transportation and extended hospital stays. The assurance of such access to transportation has consistently proven to provide a positive impact on health care management from both an access and cost containment perspective.

A Guide to your Options for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Services

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

This article is intended to provide a brief overview of the primary options for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation and the quality of service that patients consider most important to enhance their overall healthcare.

Ambulance Transportation:

Ambulance transportation is usually reserved for emergency medical situations. However, ambulance transportation can be used in non-emergency medical situations where the patient’s health is a concern, and the transport is deemed medically necessary to provide support for the patient. These transports are typically from hospital to hospital; hospital to home; hospital to nursing home; or hospital to outpatient services. The circumstances for the necessity of these transports vary widely, dependant upon the individual patient’s medical condition.

Due to the high cost of ambulance transportation, it must meet specific guidelines to be considered medically necessary, in order to be covered under Medicare, Medicaid, and most health insurance policies. Before using an ambulance service for non-emergency medical transportation, it is recommended you check with your insurance provider to see if you are covered for the service. Otherwise, you may be liable to pay the ambulance company hundreds of dollars out of your own pocket.

Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Companies:

Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT) companies were established to fill a unique void in medical care, by enabling patients who cannot drive or do not have access to transportation to get to their appointments. These companies provide a lower cost service than ambulance companies, and a safer, cleaner, more comfortable ride than private taxi services or public transportation. NEMT companies are also trained and equipped to accommodate special needs for physically disabled persons, including wheelchairs, walkers, and service animals. Our NEMT drivers are familiar with the locations and physical layouts of all the major medical facilities in our area, thus we are uniquely qualified to go the extra mile to assist passengers with door-through-door service, to and from the vehicle.

What is meant by door through door service? If a client was mobility challenged or anxious as to where to check-in for a first time appointment, our drivers can assist the client into the building, including holding doors open, assistance with elevator’s or stairs if requested.
A reputable, customer-focused NEMT company employs highly skilled drivers with these credentials:

  • CPR Certified
  • First Aid Certified
  • Defensive Driver’s Training Course
  • HIPAA Regulation Training
  • Assisting Persons with Disabilities Training
  • Emergency Situation, Procedures, and Bloodborne Pathogens Training
  • Fraud, Waste, and Abuse Training

Most NEMT companies receive their work from large transportation brokerage firms that distribute the work to qualified NEMT providers. NEMT companies must adhere to high standards, certifications, inspections, and training set forth by these companies to be considered a preferred transportation provider. NEMT companies utilize sophisticated dispatching software and scheduling programs that allow them to provide reliable, on-time service.

With prior authorization, NEMT services can be covered under Medicare, Medicaid, and many health insurance programs.

Private Taxi Transportation:

Most patients whom require non-emergency medical transportation are in a certain state of distress, due to their particular medical condition. These patients deserve clean, safe, comfortable transportation from individuals who are professional, polite, compassionate, and possess the experience and understanding of their situation.

Most private taxi drivers have little or no training on how to treat or accommodate persons with medical conditions or physical disabilities. Their primary concern is to get the passenger to their destination as quickly as possible, in order to make money. It is rare to see a private taxi driver exit his vehicle, much less offer assistance through the front door to the facility check-in area. The result of this attitude is often an unpleasant, unreliable experience that can cause more stress on the patient. Furthermore, taxi drivers often subsist on “tips”, and seem to sense that seniors and persons with mobility issues understandably are less likely to afford a gratuity, and thus the service falls to levels below that given to the general population.

Under most circumstances, private taxi companies do not bill Medicare, Medicaid, or health insurance providers. Therefore, the patient must pay the transportation fee upon delivery and handle the reimbursement request themselves.

Public Transit:

Public transportation for persons with medical conditions, behavioral problems, or physical disabilities can be an inconvenient, inefficient, and stressful mode of transportation. The patient has to find a way to the bus terminal and wait for the bus to arrive, often in inclement weather. The patient is dropped off at the bus terminal closest to their destination, but rarely within safe walking distance. Seniors and persons with disabilities are especially susceptible to falls, and boarding a bus can be a daunting and hazardous task for them.

As with private taxi drivers, few public bus drivers have adequate training on how to properly accommodate the needs of persons in poor health or with disabilities. In fact, due to the fixed-route nature of public transportation, the patient’s final destination is unknown by the bus driver. They have no way of knowing if the passenger has a health issue unless they show physical symptoms. Therefore, the driver has no indication that the patient might require special care and attention. And even if they did, the driver is under no obligation to assist the patient in any way.

Few public transit providers bill Medicaid and Medicare, due to the low rate of reimbursement and the ability to meet the complex regulations. While public transportation may be the most affordable option for persons without health insurance, the experience can exacerbate their condition, hinder their recovery, or possibly even endanger their health.


When determining your needs for non-emergency medical transportation, we recommend you take into consideration the points we’ve mentioned in this article. There are many other factors to consider that we didn’t cover here. So depending on your circumstances, you should consult with your health insurance provider, your healthcare provider, and your family to determine which method will provide you with the services you need.

Who Doesn’t Like Lower Fuel Prices Anyway?

Friday, October 24th, 2014

Today (10-14-2014) the financial headlines read: “The price of crude oil is down 25% since its peak last June”. In addition, the price of crude oil today is equal to the level found way back in June of 2012! Some industry observers predict that soon the price will reach levels not seen in over 4 years. As crude oil prices decline, so does the price of gasoline and diesel at the local gas station. In much of Texas, for example, the price at the pump for regular unleaded gasoline is below $3.00 per gallon. That’s great news! It seems that just about everybody is happy when the price of gasoline comes down at the pump. Any private consumer of gasoline likes to see the price of filling the family car come down. Any commercial business operator loves to see their fuel expense come down, and bolster the bottom line. Several other industries from Airlines to Cruise Ships to Retailers who receive products by transportation companies, must love to see the fuel price decline. As an owner of a Non-Emergency Medical Transportation company, I am especially grateful for the recent decline in fuel prices. For our company, next to payroll costs, fuel costs are our single greatest expense. I am thrilled to hear that industry experts predict that this downward trend will continue well into next year…possibly much longer.

To what do we owe this dramatic decrease in fuel prices? We can begin our analysis with the basic economic concepts of Supply and Demand:

Supply: We can thank the expanding US oil production for contributing to the increase on the supply side. Oil production has been increasing in the U.S. for over 4 years now, primarily driven by expanding production from the Bakken Shale Formation in North Dakota and the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas. Newly developing technologies in oil drilling and oil extraction technologies have made it possible to produce massive amounts of domestic oil from areas that were previously thought to be non-producing. True, there are those who criticize the potential ecological dangers associated with uncontrolled and unchecked drilling for oil, but there is no denying that the recent US oil boom has greatly improved our US economy and stimulated job growth, and not to mention, relieved our dependence on foreign supply.

Demand: The demand for oil based fuels in the US has actually declined 7 out of the past 8 years. Partly the result of automobile engine efficiencies and the introduction of alternate fuels and alternate energy sources. Globally, the European market is soft due to a weak economy and decrease in demand. Asia, and specifically China, exhibit a growing demand for oil, but that demand is growing less rapidly than in past years.

In addition to the abundant supply of oil, there is a strategic geopolitical aspect which also promotes lower fuel prices. OPEC, and Saudi Arabia in particular have announced that they do not intend to cut production of oil as a means to support prices. They have made it clear that they intend to “maintain market share” and have already participated in price cutting. This position increases world oil supplies, amid declining demand.

Now we know fuel prices are declining, and why. We know that just about everybody benefits from this situation. What I find fascinating is that there are some people who may not like lower fuel prices.

Some energy experts have speculated that if the world powers of United States, OPEC countries, Europe and Asia, allow oil prices to decline, this strategy would weaken the terrorist organization known as ISIS and their war machine. It is well documented that ISIS is funded in a large part by its participation in world oil trading. (in addition to extortion, weapons trading, money laundering and kidnapping). With less revenue coming in to ISIS from depressed world oil prices, that leaves less money to buy guns and recruit followers.

We can conclude that ISIS does not like to see lower fuel prices.

Petroleum products represent 67% of Russia’s total exports. Lower energy costs will magnify the economic impact of US and European sanctions imposed on Moscow that resulted from Russia’s power grab in the Ukraine. Russia’s credit rating is in decline, and the value of the Ruble in the world exchange market is also lower.

We can conclude that Vladimir Putin does not like to see lower fuel prices.

Those who are CEO’s of multinational oil companies may not be thrilled about lower energy prices either. Exxon, Shell, BP and companies like them have seen their stock prices take a hit lately on Wall Street. It’s hard to feel bad about companies with such huge profit reserves. I’m confident that they will get by.

We can conclude that Major Oil Companies do not like to see lower fuel prices.

When all is said and done, those of us who benefit from lower fuel prices, have a lot more to be happy about. And those who don’t benefit from lower fuel prices…Well too bad.

You Have Fallen – Now What Do You Do?

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Seniors and persons with disabilities are especially susceptible to falls, often with catastrophic consequences. Despite precautions, you should know what steps to follow if you’ve taken a sudden and unexpected fall. The best advice obviously, is to do all that is possible to eliminate the likelihood of losing your balance and taking a fall in the first place. This advice applies especially to seniors or persons with disabilities when they are required to travel in a vehicle. Entering a vehicle and exiting a vehicle are very risky maneuvers, the likelihood of experiencing a fall is further magnified when:

  • The person feels stressed to “rush” and get out of the vehicle quickly, so as not to hold up traffic.
  • They are accompanied by an untrained friend or spouse.
  • The untrained friend or spouse themselves are physically limited to steady or catch a falling passenger due to age or disabilities of their own.
  • The vehicle that they are transported in is poorly designed for accommodating anyone with a mobility issue.
  • The vehicle is parked on uneven pavement, or there are curbs, or other obstacles such as bumper poles, that may prove difficult to navigate around.

When all is said and done, utilizing the services of a qualified and respected Non Emergency Medical Transportation provider is recommended to cut down the risk of falls that can occur when seniors or persons with disabilities attempt a seemingly harmless trip to the doctor.

Despite all prudent precautions, if a fall does occur, it is recommended that you take the following steps:

Step One: Stop… Stay exactly where you’ve fallen. Take a few deep breaths, then use your medic-alert call device (if you have one), or your cell phone to summon help. If these are not available, yell and then yell again. Sooner or later someone will hear you.

Step Two: Do not try to rise immediately, until you’ve accomplished step three.

Step Three: Do a self-check to assess where and how you may be injured. You will sense whether you’re badly hurt or even whether you’ve broken a bone. If help hasn’t come repeat step one until it does.

If you’ve ascertained you’re not seriously hurt, and if no one has come to give you a hand, here is what measures experts recommend:

Inside Your Home:

  • Roll onto your side.
  • Bend your knees up to your waist.
  • Inch your way over to the nearest stable object (for example a chair or bed).
  • Reach up and grab the object firmly while still on your side.
  • Scrunch up close to the object.
  • Using your free hand as a push-up and the object in the other, roll over onto your knees.
  • If you succeed, use both hands on the object to help you rise to a standing position and then turn and sit as soon as possible.

Outside Your Home:

  • Stay down.
  • Do not let someone try to help you until you have done a self-assessment.
  • If you’re offered a coat or jacket, accept it.
  • At this point someone will probably have called 911 and if you have any doubts, stay down.
  • If you think you can get up, use the nearest sturdiest onlooker as you would a chair in your own home.
  • In general, don’t be embarrassed to let others help you. However, if there’s any doubt in your mind about your injury, wait for the Emergency Response people to arrive.

Traveling by vehicle to a friends house, shopping or a trip to the doctor can be a hazardous experience for seniors or persons with disabilities, even when they are accompanied by a well-intentioned friend or spouse. Please consider the services of a professional Non-Emergency Medical Transportation provider to insure your safe arrival free from incident or worry.