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Patients will no longer be restricted by transportation as a reason for missing important medical appointments. 

Uber Health and electronic health records company Cerner have announced the integration of EHRs with Uber’s ride-share app, allowing providers to schedule patient pick-up and drop-off for non-emergency medical appointments.

Announced at the HLTH conference in Las Vegas, patients’ information will auto-populate from Cerner’s database directly into a ride request via Uber. From there, hospitals can cover the cost of the ride with budgets allocated for non-emergency medical transportation, or bill a third-party health plan. 

“Reliable transportation to and from appointments can help reduce operating costs, patient no-show rates and help improve patient outcomes,” said Dan Trigub, head of Uber Health, in a news release. “Our goal is to simplify the way healthcare providers can access transportation options — and our work together will accomplish just that.”

An estimated 3.6 million patients reportedly cannot access healthcare due to lack of transportation, which can lead to more emergency room visits and hidden costs for patients, caregivers, providers and insurers.

"Our work with Uber Health will give health systems more resources to address some of their patient's challenges in accessing the healthcare they need," said John Gresham, senior vice president of health networks at Cerner. "Building on more than 40 years of healthcare expertise, Cerner is taking on some of the industry's biggest challenges to help improve access to healthcare, create better health outcomes and lower costs for patients and health systems."

Uber Health launched in March 2018 to broaden Uber for Business's suite of enterprise solutions and support its vision to meet the transportation needs of businesses across industries. By leveraging Cerner's platforms and solutions — containing the health information of approximately 200 million people and accessed daily by millions of clinicians — healthcare providers can reinvest resources into care.

"Uber Health has helped BayCare to improve continuity of care for our patients," said Craig Anderson, director of innovation at BayCare, a Cerner client. "Patients who have received transportation via Uber have expressed how helpful it has been due to the timeliness of the driver's arrival. Specifically, when looking at hospital throughput, Uber Health has been a tremendous asset to BayCare. Our 'discharge order to door' time has improved by 65 minutes due to our ability to provide an Uber ride for patients that are in need."

Uber Health's app will soon be available for integrated use with Cerner's EHR for U.S. providers, where Uber services are available. 

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