Jul 20, 2021

Ride Health and the American Heart Association Partner to Improve Health Equity for Patients Facing Transportation Barriers

American Heart Association’s Social Impact Fund and Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund invest $500,000 to support comprehensive patient transportation programs at renowned hospitals

Ride Health, coordinating smarter transportation for every patient need, has been granted $500,000 in funding by the American Heart Association’s (AHA) Social Impact Fund and Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund to improve health equity for patients facing transportation barriers. The grants will be used by Ride Health to partner with local health systems across Michigan, Boston, New York City, and Northern Philadelphia to launch fully-funded patient transportation programs improving access to care and social resources for underserved populations.

Social Determinants of Health play a central role in addressing health equity, with transportation playing a vital role as the means to access both clinical care and social resources. This results in transportation barriers having a compounding impact on overall health outcomes, with effects ranging from missed medical appointments to food insecurity and social isolation. Ride Health was founded to support local healthcare organizations in developing and operating transportation programs that address these barriers to good health.

Ride Health received a grant in March of 2020 from the AHA’s Social Impact Fund, which supports mission-driven organizations focused on breaking down the social and economic barriers to healthy lives. The investment was used to launch transportation programs in partnership with Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston Children’s, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harbor Health, Maimonides Medical Center, and Advanced Care Alliance of New York. Hundreds of nurses, care coordinators, and social workers across these organizations continue to use Ride Health’s end-to-end transportation coordination platform to facilitate thousands of rides for patients accessing medical care and community resources.

Building on the community impact in Boston and New York City, Ride Health received two additional grants in June of 2021 to expand the initiative across the state of Michigan and into Northern Philadelphia. In addition to a second grant from the Social Impact Fund, the new grants include investment from the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund, which supports local nonprofits and social entrepreneurs working to improve access to healthcare, food and housing, as well as economic empowerment. Ride Health will be launching transportation programs with health systems in these new markets later this summer, with early participation from MidMichigan Health and Beaumont Health.

Ride Health’s HIPAA-compliant platform – available in a web browser or integrated with major EHR systems – coordinates the entire ride experience from request intake and trip assignment through billing and payment, providing real-time updates every step of the way to ensure a seamless experience for everyone involved. The platform automatically matches each patient’s needs to the appropriate driver and vehicle across a comprehensive range of service levels, ranging from standard curbside pickups to wheelchair accessible vehicles, stretcher vans, and non-emergency ambulances. The company’s approach is designed to eliminate the common burdens associated with ride coordination, allowing clinical teams to focus on patient care while ensuring a seamless experience for patients and their caregivers.

“The funds to develop these programs and provide transportation resources have proven to be a significant benefit for many patients in need. Ride Health has exemplified the core objective of our social initiatives. We are proud to not only make a positive impact on these communities, but also to provide a solution that supports our healthcare workforce,” said Earnestine Walker, Executive Director, American Heart Association, Philadelphia.

“We appreciate the continued partnership with the American Heart Association and the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund,” said Imran Cronk, CEO and Founder of Ride Health. “Targeted and sustained community investment makes a difference in addressing health disparities, both through the initial grants themselves and through the enduring programs that these health system partners are able to create over time. We are grateful to work with partners at AHA who share that vision.”

While significant advances have been made in cardiovascular disease prevention and treatment, health results are disparate across economic, racial and ethnic groups. According to the County Health Rankings, only 20% of a person’s overall health is determined by clinical medical care, while the rest is determined by social and economic factors, as well as physical environment. Approximately 50 million people in the United States are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease because they lack the most basic needs — healthy food, clean air and drinking water, quality education, employment and housing.

About Ride Health

Ride Health partners with healthcare organizations and transportation providers to manage transportation benefits, strengthen enterprise transportation programs, and improve access to care and social services for at-risk populations. We blend technology and data with a human approach to break down access barriers and solve some of the biggest transportation challenges that payers, providers, and life science organizations face. Our platform maps out each patient’s unique needs and preferences for the best ride experience across clinical and social needs, ensuring greater access, improved efficiencies, lower costs, and better outcomes. Learn more at www.ridehealth.com.

About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a leading force for a world of longer, healthier lives. With nearly a century of lifesaving work, the Dallas-based association is dedicated to ensuring equitable health for all. We are a trustworthy source empowering people to improve their heart health, brain health and well-being. We collaborate with numerous organizations and millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, advocate for stronger public health policies and share lifesaving resources and information. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.