Lyft and Blue Cross Partner to Get Patients Rides to The Doctor


Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans will partner with the ride-hailing company Lyft to provide certain health plan enrollees “no-cost” transportation to the doctor’s office in an effort to improve compliance with healthcare appointments.

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association sees an opportunity to reduce costs and improve outcomes for commercially insured enrollees who don’t have adequate access to transportation. Blue Cross plans are moving away from fee-for-service medicine to value-based care and population health models that make sure patients are getting quality care in the right place and at the right time. Financial terms of the Lyft-Blue Cross partnership weren't disclosed.

“We can no longer ignore these barriers in healthcare called social determinants of health,” Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Chief Medical Officer Dr. Trent Haywood said in an interview. “You see high emergency room utilization rates where you have poor infrastructure. You need to be in every community to pull off what we are trying to pull off.”

“A strategic alliance with Lyft will allow us to positively impact and improve American’s health nationwide,” Blue Cross Shield Association Chief Medical Officer Dr. Trent Haywood said.  “Many Americans live in areas where medical care is beyond the reach of walking, biking or public transportation. As a result, they struggle to access critical healthcare services, even when they have health insurance.”

Transportation barriers result in “missed or delayed medical appointments” for more than 3.5 million Americans, the association said. Though there is coverage under Medicaid in many states, the association said there are still millions of Americans unable to access care where and when they need it.

(Source: Bruce Japsen , Forbes,  [5/10/2017])