If you’re looking to start a medical transportation business, you may have heard of the term NEMT. But what does that mean? Non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) is a type of transportation service that helps patients get to and from appointments for non-emergent healthcare needs. This can include everything from dialysis appointments to doctor’s visits. These transportation businesses are a great way to make money while serving your community.
Registering a Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Business
One of the first things to do to start any new business is to register your business name through your state. When it comes to NEMT businesses, you can apply as an LLC or under a DBA (Doing Business As). There are many considerations for each business type, which should be determined after thorough research. This is important because you’ll need a registered business to proceed to the next steps.
After you’ve completed the steps to getting your business registered through your state, you can start getting your NPI, or National Provider Identifier, through your state. All healthcare providers, including NEMT, must obtain an NPI before offering services. An NPI will allow you to work with Medicaid to get paid for your services, as NEMTs operate with funding from Medicaid.
Once you’ve received your national provider identifier, you can move on to applying to work with Medicaid. This will allow you to get paid through Medicaid as a medical transport. Some states have stringent requirements; for example, California has 14 requirements your company must meet to be eligible, whereas New York only requires a fee. In addition to applying for reimbursement through Medicaid, you’ll also need to apply to your local Medicaid Broker to start receiving passengers. These Medicaid Brokers will complete background checks, check your driving record, and ensure you have all required documentation and registration.
Now comes the more practical and logistical side of starting a medical transportation business - your fleet. Before beginning any business, you should have already laid out your business plan. This includes knowing how many employees you aim to start your company with. To begin, you must have at least one registered car and one licensed driver. This is as easy as using your personal vehicle and driving it yourself. As you grow, you may find you need more vehicles and perhaps even specialized equipment, including ramps for disabled passengers.
Marketing a Medical Transportation Business
One of the best ways to succeed in the medical transportation business is to build relationships with healthcare providers. If you can establish a good rapport with hospitals, clinics, and other medical facilities, they’ll be more likely to use your services. You should also make sure that you’re providing top-notch customer service. Patients should feel safe and comfortable when your company is transporting them.
How Much Money Does a Medical Transportation Business Make
By now, you’re probably wondering if it’s worth it to start a medical transportation business. With an aging population and the rise of chronic conditions, the demand for NEMT services will only grow. The pay rate will vary from state to state, with some states offering payment per mile and others offering payment per trip. NEMT businesses operate with funding from Medicaid; the annual Medicaid expenditure for transportation services is around $3 billion, according to OptimoRoute.
It may seem like there are a lot of steps to starting your own medical transportation business, but in the end, it will be worth it. Starting a medical transportation business is rewarding and can be a lucrative career, all while serving your community. What are your tips for starting a medical transportation business? Let us know below!