Keep funding the program that helps NYers on Medicaid get to their doctors appointments!
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Non Emergency Medical Transportation companies help 6.3 million New Yorkers get to their doctors appointments in a safe and timely manner through the use of a pre-authorized and reserved car service. It is an incredible program that has helped countless New Yorkers receive medical care they would not have gotten if the program was not available. In upstate NY particularly, public transit is so sparse that over 70% of people were choosing to not go to their important and sometimes life saving doctors appointments at all because they had no way of getting to them. This program was taken over by the State in 2013 and has grown incredibly, because people have access to transportation and care that they never thought possible before. Recently, our local politicians have made it clear they see the program much differently. They feel that funding the program is a waste of money when people could be taking public transportation, regardless of the fact that statewide over 75% of the population live in communities of 2,500 or fewer, with little access to public transportation. 95% of people using the program in those areas have no way other than an NEMT service to bring them directly to their doctors office. This is information that few people know, and it's those numbers that inspired me to open my own NEMT company, so I could do something that truly gave back to the community I love, and help the people who needed help the most. Unfortunately because this program has become much more available to the public, it has become mosr costly than it was before, and with the state trying to make up money wherever they can, they see the program as more of a nuisance than a life saving necessity. Because of this, funding has been cut 3 times, and sharply over the past year. The 3 reimbursement decreases has made it so I can no longer run and continue to pay our increasing bills. The Senator at the center of this decision is Senator George Borrello. He feels that the people who utilize this service can use public transportation as a less costly option for the state.
Click Here for Senator Borrellos NEMT article https://nationalcenterformobilitymanagement.org/news/ny-sen-urges-nemt-brokers-to-contract-more-w-public-transportation-providers/
What he failed to include in his numbers are the hundreds of thousands of people in NY State who could get to their incredibly important doctors appointments, or how many lives were saved by putting New Yorkers tax dollars towards this program. I live in Orange County and I am fighting particularly hard for our areaa. In Orange County, we were already being reimbursed anywhere between 25%-50% less than our surrounding counties, and now with these recent cuts, it has made it impossible to keep the proper cars, insurance and employees to run this necessary program.
I have reached out to our recently re-elected district Senator James Skoufis on numerous occasions because he is on the transportation board for the state and could be the voice Orange County needs to be able to run this program properly. As expected, I have yet to receive a response to any of my emails or phonecalls.
This program is detrimental to our community and needs to be properly funded so our most vulnerable can get to their appointments safely, appropriately and in a timely manner.
Until the funding is reinstated and raised to be on par with our surrounding counties, we can no longer keep up with the increasing costs needed to properly and legally run a Non-Emergency Medical Transportation or local transportation company in Orange County, and as they keep cutting funds, more and more counties will be unable to provide this service as well.
I beg of you to please reach out to Senator Borrello, Senator Skoufis and Gov. Cuomo and explain to them how important this program is to you, someone you love, or the community you hold so close to your heart. Please, speak up for the people in our communities, our fellow New Yorkers, who need our help the most and make it known that Medical Transportation is not an elective, it is a necessity to keep our communities healthy and safe.
Please, stand up for our community and let our politicians know we won’t be walked on or forgotten about!
If you have any questions, or have a platform where your voice would be heard more than most, please contact me at email@example.com
Your help could save the lives of countless New York residents, especially here in Orange County.
Thank you for your time and looking forward to reopening our doors if a few people in power make it possible to help countless others.
With Love and Gratitude,
Joy and Michael Signa
Owners, Monroe Taxi
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