My husband has Parkinson's. Needs transportation to get to his neurologist appt's. Any advice?


My husband has a 'transport' chair'. Not a wheel chair. I have trouble trying to get him into his chair so we can get into our van and on to the doctor. I have physical problems which limit me tremendously. Some times he is dead weight. He is 5' 4" tall and weighs approx 152 lbs. I can not depend on his help because his physical and mental abilities change often. He has good upper strength, but has weak legs. The location of the doc is 7 miles from our apt. on Covert Ave., Evansville. We live in Newburgh. Takes approx 15 min. to get to the app't. He has Medicare and a supplement through Anthem. I would want to travel with him. He sees his neurologist every 4 months. Is this something Medicare will pay for? If not what will I be charged?
Thank you for your help.

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You have a problem beyond transportation, you need help in the home, which you should discuss with his primary MD. It may be time for the doctor to order aides in the home and you need to know if Anthem will cover the cost. At some point you two should think about Assisted Living and again, check to see what Anthem will cover.
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Non-emergency medical transportation is typically "by the mile." It costs around $80 for me to get my mother to her doctor round trip and the doctor's office is about 15 minutes away from her home but this is on a stretcher with two strong men to lift her from her hospital bed, to the stretcher, drive her to the doctors office, then put her on an examination table and afterwards, come back and reverse the process. I can ride along with her in the medical transport although it is not the easiest vehicle to get in or out of for the passenger riding along. But I make due.

Here are the non-emergency medical transport companies in your area:

If none of the above links are helpful, contact a local hospital and ask to speak to a social worker - the social worker will know what non-emergency medical transport companies are available and which are the best priced.

Medicare doesn't pay for this service at all, however it is a tax deductible expense. I believe what you actually need is a Hoyer Lift - which is something Medicare WILL pay for if your husband's doctor prescribes one for him. The Hoyer Lift will enable you to get him into a wheelchair (which your husband probably now needs, too and which Medicare will also pay for). Be sure to ask the doctor if your husband can qualify for these items now.

You don't mention your age, but, I am concerned for you that your husband's care may now be becoming more than you can handle since you are struggling to get him out of bed and into his transfer chair at times. Perhaps it is time for you to bring in a caregiver for a few hours a week to assist you? Caregiver's typically cost $16 - 30 per hour and can be an absolute Godsend.
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You should check on "ambulette"services in your area and find out what the charge would be round trip. The rules about what Medicare will and won't pay for with regard to transportation are a mystery to me. Your doctor's office may know about this.
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