Cerner, Uber Health Partner to Help Patients Overcome Transportation Barriers

Oct. 29, 2019
Providers will be able to order ride requests for patients in the EHR

Electronic health record (EHR) giant Cerner and Uber Health are partnering up so that providers can license Uber’s non-emergency transportation solutions, which can be added into the Cerner EHR and directly into the physicians’ hands to help them more effectively manage patient challenges.

The two companies are striving to work together to help reduce transportation barriers that can lead to delayed care, poor management of chronic conditions and declining health outcomes for patients, officials said in a joint press release this week.

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. Incorporating social needs directly into existing advanced health care technology can help solve for missed appointments and delayed treatment, noted officials from Cerner and Uber.

As such, with this agreement, providers will be able to license from Uber Health the tools to book transportation directly from the Cerner EHR. A patient's information—name, phone number and pick-up address—will auto-populate from Cerner technology directly into a ride request with Uber.

Uber Health launched in March 2018, providing a ride-hailing platform specifically to healthcare providers. Uber aims to partner with healthcare organizations to provide reliable, comfortable transportation for patients, even for riders who don’t have a smartphone or the Uber app.

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, according to officials.

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

Craig Anderson, director of innovation at BayCare, a Cerner client based in Florida, remarked, “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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