Choosing the Right NEMT Broker: 3 Tips for Health Plans (part 1)

by Gabriel Rojas

Non-Emergency Medical Transportation (NEMT) is a critical benefit for many health plans, ensuring that their members can access medical care. However, NEMT has had a history of poor service, leading to member complaints, grievances, and member retention issues for health plans. To effectively provide NEMT benefits, health plans must carefully select the right NEMT broker. This article will outline three tips health plans should evaluate when choosing an NEMT broker.

 Make sure the NEMT Broker:

1. Developed Advanced NEMT Technology

· Determine the NEMT broker's technological capabilities. Look for brokers who leverage advanced systems for efficient scheduling and dispatching.

· Find out if they use real-time GPS tracking of rides. Make sure this includes all modes of transportation, and not just rideshare. Compare the percentage of digitization with that of other NEMT brokers.

· Consider NEMT brokers that offer member mobile applications or online portals, allowing members to schedule rides, track their transportation, receive reminders, notifications, and updates. Make sure they will brand the mobile app to your health plan.

· Assess the broker's ability to integrate with health plan systems or electronic health records, facilitating seamless data exchange and coordination of care.

2. Prioritizes Network Adequacy and Provider Relations

· Assess the broker's network of transportation providers. Ensure they either have a large network that covers your market or have processes to onboard new providers and meet network adequacy prior to contract go-live. Understand how they determine network adequacy and what processes they use to handle rural or remote markets with few drivers.

· Verify that the NEMT broker has programs and processes to build solid relationships with reliable transportation providers. Look into the payment schedule, clean claim rate, and their denial rate. Providers who are paid fast and accurately provide better and more reliable services.

· Look into what added value they provide to their transportation providers. Maybe they offer discount programs, incentives, or free consulting. Find out if they survey their transportation providers and compare the score with other NEMT brokers.

3. Focuses on Quality Assurance and Performance:

· Evaluate their ability to capture and analyze member feedback, address complaints or issues promptly, and continuously improve service delivery. Look into how they recover trips if the driver is running late, or the vehicle breaks down.

· Consider brokers that can provide comprehensive reporting on key performance indicators (KPIs), such as on-time performance, missed trips, call wait times, call abandonment, and member satisfaction. Compare the KPIs with other NEMT brokers' performance.

· Ensure they have programs built to reward transportation providers who exceed performance and understand their processes for providers who are underperforming.

· Inquire about the NEMT broker's quality assurance processes and performance monitoring systems. Ensure they have mechanisms in place to regularly report and assess the quality of the transportation services provided.

Selecting the right NEMT broker is crucial for health plans to ensure efficient and reliable transportation services for their members. By following these 3 tips health plans can make informed decisions that align with their members' needs and provide exceptional NEMT benefits. A strong partnership with a reputable NEMT broker will enhance member satisfaction, streamline operations, and contribute to the overall success of the health plan's transportation services.


 About Alivi Health:

Alivi Health is a leading non-emergency medical transportation broker, who contractually guarantees they will meet all performance service levels. Alivi offers a world class solution by leveraging the most advanced NEMT technology, and innovative process.

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