Transportation and Philanthropy

Mark Switaj

Throughout the United States, social determinants of health (SDOH) have begun emerging as a top priority for nonprofit health foundations and academic medical centers supported by philanthropy. This emergence is giving rise to new grantmaking opportunities, programs, and initiatives for the betterment of health in our neighborhoods and communities. But in the past, transportation, among other social determinants, hasn’t been much of a priority for philanthropy. Because transportation touches so many aspects of a person’s life, someone’s level of access to reliable transportation can also determine how well they access their healthcare. It is a sobering reality, then, that transportation can be the deciding factor in health outcomes. By providing an affordable, reliable, and timely medical transportation service, tailored to the physical needs of patients, transportation barriers can effectively be removed as a challenge for patients as they seek care.

For many health systems in the country, the challenge is not that there isn’t enough money in the bank to pay for a non-emergency medical transportation program, but that there isn’t money allocated for it in their budget. As such, implementing a transportation program at health systems is an ideal solution for philanthropy. As benefactors are looking to make an impact through giving, their dollars are usually directed towards funding education and research priorities that pave the way for tomorrow’s discoveries. With 1 in 10 people missing a medical appointment due to a transportation barrier, funding a transportation program is a way for philanthropists to make an impact today.

The exciting part? Transportation presents an innovative way for philanthropists to leave a legacy that goes beyond putting a name on a building. Creating a transportation program is a solution that can make an immense impact on population health, regardless of the health system’s service area. Ultimately, it’ a solution that works for both urban and rural health. When you have the funding, the next part is figuring out the best way to launch your program. Roundtrip’s transportation software platform is designed for health professionals to order any level of non-emergency patient transportation, including rideshare, medical sedan, wheelchair van, and non-emergency ambulances. If you have identified transportation as a priority for philanthropy at your organization, we would love to get in contact with you to discuss how Roundtrip could work for you.