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It's for me, a 65 year old - I'm mobile. I live in Strongsville, ohio 44136. Having trouble finding a medical appt. escort. The hospital requires them to be there. All the services I see offered are just a ride to and from. I've done an exhaustive search and can't find anything. I notice Care.com but some reviews say the person many times just doesn't show or cancels last minute.

In April 2016, I required a colonoscopy and endoscopy under general sedation to get a diagnosis for digestive issues. My friend escorted me to the hospital. After the procedure, the hospital pushed me in wheelchair to my friend's waiting vehicle then drove me home. Fortunately, she did not have to stay with me overnight but checked with me the next morning to see I was OK. Without my friend's help, my procedure would have been cancelled for a different schedule.

The procedure disclosed mild colitis and a small hiatal hernia but I'm otherwise fine.
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Reply to Patathome01
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Call the patient rep in surgery center. They may know who provides that service in your area. Call your doctors office. Call the Area Agency on Aging and local senior centers. The senior center when I lived in southwestern Ohio had a file of drivers. Lots of senior women used their service. Local service at university had students who would drive. Also check with student employment office they also have listings of students who drive people. My cousins son drove people every afternoon when he went to Ohio State.
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Reply to Becky04469
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zk1529: Imho, the one for $125 seems to be your best bet. Perhaps you should go with that rather than fretting about it. Call it a day.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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How about Visiting Angels?
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Reply to ConnieCaretaker
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I live alone too. I do have at least one close neighbor who may be available. No local family in CA unless someone flies in to stay with me, so I can see how tough and frustrating finding an escort is, especially with my autism.

What would happen if a medical emergency happened, you have no one with you nor cannot speak for yourself?? However, if you have an advanced health directive, the designated may be contacted you hope are available at the time of the call. The extreme alternate is the law enforcement should surgery if consent is necessary. It truly takes a village to help each other!
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Reply to Patathome01
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How far is it to the hospital? Are you in a position to spend a couple hundred $$ for the day? Could you make arrangements in advance with a employee of the facility to drive you home? Maybe the receptionist or secretary or even one of the nurses who could use some extra money. They would probably be very reliable and might be very happy to help especially if presented as a huge favor to you. You might have to wait until the end of their shift or lunchtime. Take a taxi to the facility and your return driver is already there. Good luck.
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Reply to robert152
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zk1529, please let us know if or how you were able to solve your problem. Your update will help others in similar situations. I hope your procedure went well. Thanks!
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Reply to Geaton777
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Volunteers can only take you to and from routine appointments. When you need a "responsible party," you may need to hire a home care aide. Most have a 3 or 4 hour minimum, so it may cost $100-140. There are Medical Transport services in some cities which cost a similar amount.
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Reply to RedVanAnnie
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Possibly research a home health agency in your area, call the health and human services, your insurance or independent home health aides. Home health aides can assist you with whatever you need including taking you to and from appointments and staying with you, conversation and company, helping with grocery shopping and errands, etc. it’s worth looking into. Not all home health agencies are medical, there’s non-medical as well. I hope this will help you.
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Reply to DreschHill
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Good Morning,

I am a firm believer in calling on your local Church people, especially the retired men who are dependable!

Hope this helps.
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Reply to Ireland
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JoAnn29 Oct 24, 2022
Problem here is, I think she needs to have someone stay with her for 24hrs. I man from Church may not be a solution.
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Private nursing services do this. My friend -- an RN -- was a private nurse for years. She would be with the person all throughout any medical visits. Drive them there or go in medical transport as needed. Wheel them where they had to go and be in the room with them with the doctor to take notes and write up a report for family members. Call your doctor and/or local hospital and ask for a referral or recommendation to a good private nursing agency where you live. We we live, the rate for such services is about $150.00 an hour including their travel time to get to you.

Some areas have non-profit entities that provide less expensive services with volunteer nurses or nurse aides; but these services tend to booked up and you may have to wait to get on the schedule. Try calling your local area agency on aging as they have have a list of such entities.
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Reply to Sohenc
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Speak with your primary physician for referrals to home health agencies.
I have used a home health agency several times and the assigned caregiver was on time, drove me, stayed at the place of testing with me, drove me back home and, stayed with me at home to get me settled. One service even went and picked up medication for me after returning me home and, would make light meal ( soup, sandwich etc) if requested. This was a four hour block of time and the billing cost payment was arranged with the company prior to day of service. It has been several years since I used this service but the cost was approximately in the range of 125. - 150. for four hours
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Reply to janicemeyer18
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I may be confused, but as an older single person, I've had to use a home health agency many times. Like you, I don't like to ask my church or my friends for something like this. Usually agencies have a minimum of 4 hours, not a maximum--are you certain you understood? You ask for a caregiver who drives, and she will pick you up, wait for you/go in with you, and take you home. If it hasn't taken 4 hr, you will still need to pay for 4 hr, so it might be worth it to let her do a few things for you in your home before leaving. You also need to tell the agency there's a possibility of more hours being needed at the appointment, and ask them to give you a caregiver who is available for additional hours if needed. They may want to come out and interview you before they accept you as a client, even for one visit only, but they won't charge for the intake visit, just the actual caregiving. And since it's an agency, if something happens to the caregiver at the last minute, they will send another caregiver. $125 + mileage s a very reasonable charge for a 4-hr caregiver service.
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Reply to caroli1
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You could get the senior bus to take you and pick u up later. But when you say Medical Escort to me that means someone willing to stay the night? You need to be observed for 24 hrs.

What I would do, is just get a ride there and back. When asked if you have transportation and someone to stay with you say yes. They are not going to come to your house and make sure. Just pray u have no complications.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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caroli1 Oct 25, 2022
JoAnn, in my experience, usually they will not let you leave without a person picking you up who says that she/he will be staying with you or that she/he is taking you home and that there is someone else staying with you when you get home. They won't let you leave in a cab or a bus. Whether the person actually stays with you for the required amount of time won't be checked on, and I have sometimes managed to avoid the compulsory "stay" in this way. Usually, it's been a neighbor whom I asked to stay a little while and then to call me every few hours after leaving, but not to actually stay with me. If I really needed someone to stay, then I did employ an agency caregiver (set up in advance). So far, I've managed never to misestimate: I always had determined in advance whether I would need someone to stay. I don't know about zk12, but as a single person accustomed to living alone, I do not like someone watching out for me when I am not feeling great and prefer to be alone!
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In general, medical insurance will not pay for an overnight stay for an out-patient procedure.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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Interesting you can't stay for one night at the hospital?
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Geaton777 Oct 18, 2022
Individuals don't get to decide if they stay overnight in a hospital. You have to be assessed by your doctor or attending physician that you need it. Because it's all about the billing code. Outpatient surgery is in and then immediately out. It's not the hospital's problem when patients can't find rides or procedure companions, as cold a fact as this is.
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If you're concerned about the driver not showing up, then ask someone to be a back-up person in case the driver flakes out on you.
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Tynagh Oct 19, 2022
I'm going to take a stab at this and guess if she had someone to ask as a backup she might not be in this position.
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Are you on Nextdoor? My sister is and has great success finding info about neighborhood goings-on and activities, as well as troubleshooting issues. Asking a very local group of folks might yield a reference for a good, reliable person who can provide what you’re looking for. (For a fair price for his or her time, of course.)

Good luck!
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Reply to SnoopyLove
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
Good lead, thanks!
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This is the way it goes; a person needs a caregiver to drive them to and from a medical procedure appointment, period, we're all in the same boat on this. You don't want to pay for a 'caregiver', yet you need a procedure done. So you pay, whether you like it or not! That's life in 2022. You ask a family member or a friend to help you out, or a church member if they are willing, and if you find yourself between a rock & a hard place, you hire a caregiver to escort you back & forth and you pay the required fee. For enough $$$$, the person will show up to do their job and you'll be all set.

You say, "Found one however they wanted $125 for 4 hour max - not sure what they would do if MD ran late.. A last resort option." If the MD ran late, you'd pay the person more money to stay later, that's what you'd do.

You also say, "The local church will be my last resort.. Thanks." I should think you'd be thrilled to have a church member spend their time escorting you to and from a medical procedure for free.......rather than considering it a 'last resort' as you are considering the $125 fee for a 4 hr max person!

If you want this procedure done, pick one of these options & call it a day, that's my 'advice'. You've done an 'exhaustive search' so there you have it.
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Reply to lealonnie1
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I found this:

https://www.care.com/senior-transportation/strongsville-oh
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
I looked at that - have seen complaints that some times the person will cancel last minute when they get a better opening.. I can't risk that. Thanks.
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Would your county office on aging have suggestions? My 73-year-old husband had to leave our home at 4 am last week to take his brother (84) for pacemaker surgery. He did stay overnight with him afterward. We live 2 hours away so not exactly a simple trip. Not everyone has family that lives close by or friends/neighbors that they would feel comfortable with such a big ask. I found a woman (by word of mouth) that would work hourly as a paid companion and would do such trips as you are asking. However, she did require that she was scheduled regularly so my father hired her for 3 hours once a week.
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Reply to lkdrymom
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
Called Office on aging - they said they don't have medical appt escorts. Thanks
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I don't know if this will help or not but when my dad lost his driving privileges I needed someone to drive him to visit his wife who is in a nursing home a couple of times a week. Since he had some mild dementia I didn't want to hire a transportation company who would just drop him off and pick him up so I contacted a home health care agency and they had a companion service where I was able to get someone to drive him to the nursing home and she stayed the entire time in the lobby waiting for him and then drove him back home. You will need to tell them how long you need the companion for and of course they charge an hourly rate and mileage. Another option as I think others have mentioned in case you need someone to stay with you for a long period of time is to see if one of the home health care agencies can send you a caregiver who will drive you and then stay with you at your appointment and then at your home for however long you need.
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Reply to drained
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
Found one however they wanted $125 for 4 hour max - not sure what they would do if MD ran late.. A last resort option..
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I guess this is where you need to show someone will drive you home and stay with you for 24 hrs? Does it have to be someone with some medical background or just having someone there to be able to call 911 if you have a problem?

You have no friends or family that can drive you to and from and spend the night?
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Reply to JoAnn29
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Having a similar issue here. I think it just really shows how this country discounts (I might even say despises) the single person. While we are welcome to contribute to society through our tax dollars, there's absolutely nothing given in return. Just listen to politicians/political candidates. It's all about "families" not someone who has helped families, but is now standing alone. In all honestly, it's as there's a death wish for the unfamilied. It's not outright, but it's subtle.
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Christine44 Oct 24, 2022
Totally "get" this. Have thought of writing an article on the same subject. It's not just medical care, but also other types of services. I've thought, in recent years, if ever there was truly a real shortage of food, for example, single people would be the most likely to starve, and then when you add in "elderly, single people," it's not a pretty picture. It's all about families, or single people with children. And, of course, I don't begrudge them things they get for children but sometimes there is a real, perceptible discrimination against single people. I used to go to a local food bank and a volunteer would come out to your car and tell you what particular nice thing they had this week, like salmon, a roast of veal, etc. and ask if you would like this. Of course, the answer was yes, but when I'd get home and look in the one bag of groceries there was no salmon, no roast of veal, etc. Waiting in line in my car once a woman behind me came up to ask me something, and I asked if she was single. She said yes, but was curious about why I asked. When I told her my observation about how single people get very little food compared to others, she was 100% in agreement and said she seldom even bothered going there for that reason. I don't go there anymore.
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I'm assuming you've asked neighbors... Do you belong to a church or faith organization? Even if you don't, you can call up a large church that is as local to you as possible and ask if they have a Care Ministry and tell them your dilemma. Our church has such a ministry and part of it focuses on the elderly. Normally they won't care that you're not an attender or even a member of that faith.

I just did a search for "churches near strongsville, oh 44136" and many came up. It should list their phone numbers and locations in the search results.
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
The local church will be my last resort.. Thanks..
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You may need to hire a caregiver that drives for that time.

Sometimes, changing the terminology can get you the right person.
Instead of searching for a "driver", call an agency that sends out "caregivers".
Maybe meeting them beforehand will improve the chances of them showing up.

Does the "escort" need to have any skills to help you with recovery just after?
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Reply to Sendhelp
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
Just need someone to be at the appt and drive me home - nothing major - no care needed. I think this would be the most expensive option. You're paying 2x - the agency who then pays the driver. Thanks!
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What do hospitals do for those who are alone? I am sure they have such patients. Please call your hospital and ask them. Tell them you have no one and can not find an escort. I'd be shocked if they said they could not treat you.
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Reply to polarbear
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AnnReid Oct 18, 2022
I went a colonoscopy appointment some time ago and unexpectedly met there a man whom I’d known years before.

He was in the process of being told he’d have to reschedule, so of course my husband and I said we’d wait for him and drive him home.

I would think this must happen quite frequently, and I’d bet at least some of those appointments are not rescheduled.

There absolutely IS a need for this servce.
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I would start by calling Medicare -- I don't know how that works though if you have an Advantage Plan. I've called the Medicare number several times and their agents have been very helpful. If you have an Advantage Plan ask them. There's a good chance I'll be in the same boat soon. Visiting Angels (if there's one in your area) does that kind of thing but it's costly & some people on this forum haven't had positive things to say about them -- but that could depend on a particular area of service/franchise. Good luck.
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Reply to Christine44
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zk1529 Oct 18, 2022
Tried calling my Medicare PPO - that service not available.. Visiting Angels does not provide that service either.. Thanks for the ideas..
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