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Ride Health Expands Transportation Services

Ride Health, coordinating smarter transportation for every patient need, has expanded its core offerings to launch several new COVID-19–related products and services to support the needs of constituents across the health care spectrum.

With these updates, health systems and health plans across the country are now using Ride Health's cloud-based transportation coordination platform to provide safe rides for patients and staff, to deliver food and supplies to patients' homes, and to enable contact tracing of passengers and drivers who have been exposed to or diagnosed with COVID-19.

To speed delivery of these services, Ride Health has launched Rapid Deployment, enabling health care organizations to quickly provide comprehensive transportation programs that help with patient discharges, transfers, and access to crucial medical treatments that cannot be postponed. The program allows organizations to launch transportation programs in a matter of days, without upfront costs or long-term commitments.

COVID-19–Equipped Transportation Network
In addition to its current 50-state network of providers, Ride Health has expanded its fleet in states including Illinois, North Carolina, and New York by contracting with additional high-quality transportation providers that have the appropriate policies, procedures, and equipment to safely transport patients with a presumptive or confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. To access these providers, Ride Health has also built a native COVID-19 screening tool into its standard platform. During the process of a trip request submission, a user will be prompted with key COVID-19 related questions to identify at-risk passengers. After submitting the trip request, a patient's COVID-19 risk is automatically factored into the Ride Health platform's decision logic to determine the appropriate driver and vehicle.

Staff and Clinician Transport
Health care providers across the country have also faced transportation challenges for their front-line workers. For health systems located in urban areas, service reductions in public transit have prompted organizations to implement employee transportation programs. Other clients, such as North Carolina–based Novant Health, have turned to Ride Health to provide safe transportation for team members who may have been exposed to COVID-19.

Food Delivery for Vulnerable Populations
Beyond access to care, social distancing and shelter-in-place guidelines have created significant challenges for those facing factors associated with social determinants of health. Through partnerships with local food banks and grocery stores, health plan clients including Harvard Pilgrim Health Care have broadened their services to leverage the Ride Health transportation network to provide contactless delivery of food and supplies to eligible members in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine.

Tech-Enabled Contact Tracing
Ride Health has also implemented new standardized programs to reduce the spread of the coronavirus by leveraging the platform's real-time geospatial tracking and data capture. For any instances where a passenger reports a positive COVID-19 diagnosis and/or exposure, Ride Health can rapidly identify the associated vehicles and drivers. After identification, Ride Health sends out HIPAA-compliant notifications to alert transportation providers, enabling them to take the necessary precautions including vehicle sanitization and driver self-quarantine.

“We understand the ever-evolving complexities surrounding this pandemic and we've strived to adapt our product and services to support current and future needs of health care stakeholders and as we enter this new normal,” says Imran Cronk, founder and CEO of Ride Health.

— Source: Ride Health


AIM Philadelphia Offers Post-9/11 Veteran Institutional Grant

Aviation Institute of Maintenance’s (AIM) Philadelphia campus will award veteran students, eligible for Post-9/11 (Chapter 33) benefits at the 100% coverage level, a grant that will cover any out-of-pocket tuition costs after their VA benefits and any Pell grants have been applied, as long as they do not participate in the federal Title IV Loan programs. The grant is only offered at AIM’s Philadelphia campus.

AIM’s commitment to their veterans assures that service men and women transition from the military with financial freedom and the skills and certifications needed to attain employment in their chosen field and thrive as professionals in the civilian workplace. The grant does not cover books, supplies, housing, or charges for repeat coursework the VA does not, by policy, cover. Each academic year, the institution will consider Chapter 33 benefits and any federal Pell Grant funding as payment in full, up to the full tuition and fee cost for the program. Recipients’ accounts are reviewed each semester of the academic year for receipt of VA payment and recipients are awarded the grant to cover eligible remaining tuition and fees for that semester.

— Source: Aviation Institute of Maintenance


UNE Online Begins Offering Virtual MSW Field Simulation

The University of New England College of Graduate and Professional Studies (UNE Online) is offering its Master of Social Work (MSW) students a Simulation and On-Site (SOS) field placement model of education, allowing them to complete a portion of their field hours in a virtual, online environment.

With the introduction of the SOS simulated field experience, students are now able to choose to complete their field requirements in a partially simulated/direct practice field practicum or to engage in a traditional, fully onsite field experience.

The simulation model builds on UNE Online’s previous work to improve access to higher education. In 2009, the college was one of the nation’s earliest to offer a 100% online degree in an asynchronous format. The new model is designed to enhance both students’ general and specialized skills prior to placement, increase accessibility, and ensure students are grounded in competency-based skills in social work.

Historically, there have been several barriers and inequities in MSW field experience requirements. The simulated field education model, accredited by the Council for Social Work Education (CSWE), aims to upend that.

“The SOS model was formulated to satisfy the rigorous CSWE accreditation standards, but we believe that the model can be easily adapted to meet other accreditation standards,” says MSW Field Practicum Coordinator Christine Rogerson. “If this SOS model approach can be adapted to other UNE masters-level programs such as Public Health, Health Informatics, and Applied Nutrition, it has the potential to open up a vast field of opportunity to people who may not have the time or opportunity to meet their field requirements otherwise.”

The novel coronavirus pandemic has demonstrated the need to provide alternatives to in-person field training. The SOS model was developed in response to the pandemic, which prevented students from engaging in direct practice. Using a holistic approach, the virtual field experience represents the next generation of social work education in creating a learning environment designed to meet the evolving needs of students and increasing the accessibility of higher education to a greater number of people.

Additionally, the program offers a greater control over other models in engaging students in specific learning outcomes prior to entering direct practice.

— Source: University of New England