Starting a NEMT Business
For one who is entrepreneurial by nature, there are basically three options for entering the NEMT business. Those are:
-Purchase and existing business.
-Purchase a franchise. One such quote priced a franchise at about $45,000.00 cited by Paratransit Watch blog in a 2009 post..
-Consider starting your own business from scratch. Concerning the previous options, one might consider independently researching the Better Business Bureau or Federal Trade Commission for activity related to a given business or franchise. This will better aid the decision process in the final analysis.
Determine early on if the business will be a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation or LLC. This will help with the essential formal paperwork needing to be processed. Also decide which type of transportation you’re interested, Like long distance medical transportation, and medical transport by air.
Generally, federal, state and local municipalities have licensing requirements. These can be for federal tax identification, a Medallion for being a public company providing private transportation, and in some areas a certificate may be required to operate an NEMT business.
–Insurance: The advent of computer technology has made shopping for most forms of insurance more convenient, as quotes can be secured online. One may also independently research the topic, insurance for non-emergency medical transportation. It is recommended that both business insurance and liability insurance be acquired. Coverage for both has a $200,000.00 price range (variable coverage). Determining size of business and target audience along with consulting an insurance broker may help aid the appropriate amount needing to be purchased. Note also, some ground transport services permit a family member to accompany the person being transported to and from medical services. If an accident should occur, will liability cover all riders?
–Marketing: No one is going to realize an NEMT service is provided by osmosis. A plan of marketing is essential. At the local level contacting numerous healthcare and social service providers may be a first measure. Consider alerting local chamber of commerce, hospital and or clinic administrators, long-term or short-term care living facilities such as retirement villas or nursing homes, occupational therapy and or physical therapy providers, mental health associations or providers, churches or synagogues and perhaps others that are similar but not mentioned here.
If purchasing a franchise, one benefit is that the franchise will offer supports in establishing services. This may include: a start-up training program, detailed operation manual for business, access to current technology, assistance with local outreach and marketing, a “how-to” work with brokers, investors, and governmental agencies such as Medicaid or state Medicaid programs offering insurance as an expansion of the Affordable Care Act.