What Qualities Should You Look for in an NEMT Driver?
- Always Aware of a Passenger’s Needs
- A Safe, Responsible Driver
- A People Person
- Be Selective With Who You Hire
Always Aware of a Passenger’s Needs
You want drivers who pay attention to each passenger’s individual needs and put their safety first. For instance, you likely deal with many customers who require a wheelchair for transportation. If that wheelchair isn’t properly fastened and secured before driving away, your driver could cause serious harm to the passenger. Likewise, many passengers may need walkers, stretchers, IVs, oxygen tanks, or other medical equipment that needs to be carefully handled and checked before starting a trip. If a driver isn’t comfortable with this level of responsibility, they shouldn’t be in the NEMT field.
A Safe, Responsible Driver
This means finding someone with a clean driving record who can show that they’re not reckless on the road. It’s also worth having your drivers go through a defensive driving course, if they haven’t yet taken one, to enhance their ability to perform safe trips. Additionally, you want to be able to trust that your driver can do both pre and post-trip inspections to make sure there are no problems with the vehicle.
A People Person
Overall, your drivers should be friendly, sociable people. You want someone who’s kind and willing to have a conversation with a stranger. Getting into a vehicle with an unfamiliar face isn’t always the easiest thing to do, but if your passenger feels comfortable with the driver in the first few minutes, the rest of the ride will be better for everyone. Plus, communication is important for any trip changes or delays, so you want someone you can depend on to be in contact with you or the patient, however your process works, if times and pickups need to change.
Be Selective With Who You Hire
Sometimes it’s tempting to hire the first few applicants you interview. You might think, they aren’t the best, but they’ll do for now. But that’s not the right attitude to have in the NEMT field, and it can even become a dangerous one if you hire a risky driver. Make it clear that you want friendly, committed employees. This isn’t just a taxi gig; it’s a personal transport job that allows your drivers to perform a big responsibility—providing rides for elderly and low-income individuals who need to get to a medical appointment.
If you’re looking for routing software for your NEMT company, get in touch with the folks at RouteGenie for more information today!
About the author
Emmy Kolbe is a copywriter at RouteGenie, where she spends her days writing about non-emergency medical transportation software. She creates content for both emerging and existing transportation companies. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication from St. Bonaventure University.READ MORE