Free Rides from Medicaid
Medicaid provides free transportation for Texas Health Steps patients and other eligible Medicaid clients, provided they have no other means of transportation. NEMT services include rides from contracted providers, mass transit fare, ground and airline transportation, advanced funds and funds for eligible clients’ meals and lodging. If the Medicaid client has no way to get to a Medicaid or Texas Health Steps visit, NEMT services can be used for rides to the doctor, dentist, hospital or drug store and back home. Eligible adults with Medicaid can get free rides, too.
Advantages for Health-Care Professionals:
- Medicaid rides help patients miss fewer appointments, reducing no-shows and the need to overbook appointments.
- With a single call, your office or patient can arrange travel for an entire month for ongoing appointments such as renal dialysis for kidney disease.
Parental Accompaniment Requirement
Children 17 years and younger who receive NEMT services must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, or by another responsible adult approved by the parent or legal guardian who is not employed by or affiliated with the provider. Parents or legal guardians who cannot travel with their child should use the Parent Authorization Form designated by the health plan to designate another adult to travel with their child. Individuals aged 15 through 17 years may travel without an adult with the written permission from a parent, guardian or other responsible adult.
Transportation Service Delivery Models
Clients who enroll in managed care organizations receive NEMT services through their health plan and no longer receive these services through managed transportation organizations. Clients not enrolled in managed care receive NEMT through the Medical Transportation Program (MTP).
Rides must be scheduled two days in advance for an existing appointment with an enrolled Texas Medicaid health-care provider. Same-day appointments will be available for appointments that involve:
- Discharge of a client from a health care facility;
- Obtaining pharmacy services and prescription drugs;
- Receipt of urgent care.
Tell Medicaid patients and caregivers about the free ride service when you schedule visits and provide them with the correct toll-free number to schedule a ride. Bilingual staff is available to help patients in English and Spanish, and a language line is available for the most prevalent languages.
Call center staff is available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Central time.
- If a child has a Medicaid health plan, consult the Medical Transportation Program page listed below to find health plan contact information.
- If child does not have a health plan, call 1-877-633-8747 (1-877-MED-TRIP).
For more information, visit the Medical Transportation Program page on HHSC's website.