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Hart to Heart Wheelchair and Ambulance Recipients

Baltimore County Department of Health
6401 York Road, Third Floor
Baltimore, Maryland 21212-2130
Email: communityhealthservices@baltimorecountymd.gov

Phone: 410-887-2828
TTY users call via Maryland Relay 7-1-1

Service

Hart to Heart provides transportation covered by Medical Assistance to and from medical appointments as well as discharges and transfers from medical facilities. Wheelchair clients may be riding with other clients and their escorts to and from appointments. It is not a private wheelchair van transportation service. Clients traveling by ambulance will not be riding with other clients as there is only one client per ambulance. Hart to Heart is the contracted vendor for Baltimore County. Hart to Heart may use subcontractors for both wheelchair and ambulance rides.

Eligibility

The following requirements determine eligibility.

  • You must be a Baltimore County resident with eligible Medical Assistance
  • You must have absolutely no other way to get to and from your medical appointment
  • You must have your medical provider complete and sign a Baltimore County Certificate for Medical Transportation form and submit it to the Baltimore County Department of Health or Hart to Heart as may be appropriate
    • All sections of this form must be filled out completely, and include all medical information.
    • Your diagnosis must support the medical necessity of your mode of transport.

Cost

The Maryland Medical Assistance Program covers the cost of these transportation services. There is no cost to the client provided your trips are prearranged and screened by the Baltimore County Health Department or their representative.

Transportation Days and Hours of Operation

Regular transportation services operate Monday through Saturday, and begin as early as 5 a.m. and end as late as 8 p.m. Medical facility discharges and transfers are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

Escorts

Many wheelchair and stretcher clients need to have someone accompany them to their medical appointments while others are able to travel on their own. When arranging your rides, please advise Health Department staff if you will be having someone travel with you due to your medical condition. Please note that many physicians’ offices will not see patients unless an escort comes along. Should that be the case, it is your responsibility to arrange to have someone travel with you as we cannot provide escorts. This is particularly true of stretcher clients going to a doctor’s office.

Schedule Wheelchair or Ambulance Rides

Call the Baltimore County Department of Health directly at 410-887-2828 to schedule all transports to medical appointments. Phone lines are open Monday through Friday (except County holidays), from 8:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., to schedule rides. Rides must be called in one to seven days in advance during the hours listed; we cannot offer same day rides except under extreme circumstances.

The following information must be provided at the time transportation is arranged:

  • Caller’s name and direct phone number
  • Recipient’s personal information including: name, social security number, date of birth, Medical Assistance Number and Medicare number (if applicable)
  • Pick up address, name of facility with room and bed number (if applicable) as well as phone number
  • Destination address and ZIP code along with the building name, room and suite number, and phone number directly to the room or suite (not a facility main phone number of scheduling number).
  • Attending physician’s name and the reason for the transport (must be specific)
  • Type of transportation requested, wheelchair or stretcher. (Please refer to Eligibility above.)
  • Date and time of appointment
  • Other pertinent ride information including client oxygen usage, steps at the pick up location (if applicable) and patient weight
  • Requests for stretcher transportation to a doctor’s office must be verified for accommodation prior to scheduling a ride. Specific details are provided when calling the County to place the transport.

Clients should be ready for their ride one hour prior to their appointment time. Baltimore County Health Department staff will give you your “ready time” when you schedule your ride.

Cancellation and No-Show or Cancel-at-Door Policy

A no-show occurs when a client either is not at the arranged pickup point at the appointed time or refuses the ride at the time the transport arrives and has not canceled the trip in advance. This is true for both inbound and return trips. Drivers will wait no more than 15 minutes for the recipient to ready themselves before leaving and reporting the no-show to the County. Driver lateness is not considered a no-show for the purpose of this policy.

Transportation may be canceled up to 30 minutes prior to the scheduled ready time without penalty (i.e. incomplete call, no-show, cancel-at-door) by calling the County (during business hours noted above) or the contracted vendor, Hart to Heart at 443-573-2037.

Multiple No-Shows

Recipients who have received multiple no-shows will:

  1. Initially, receive a warning and advised that additional no-shows may result in the recipient having to call the County the day before any future appointment to schedule a transport.
  2. Generate an Advance Confirmation Notice that will require the recipient to call the day before the appointment to schedule their ride. This shall include recipients who have standing orders for repeat appointments.

Schedule Medical Facility Discharges or Transfers

Medical facility discharges and transfers are set up on the day the medical facility discharge or transfer is to occur. Call Hart to Heart directly at 443-573-2037 to arrange the transport.

Inclement Weather

To insure the safety and well being of all our clients, it may be necessary to cancel rides for routine medical appointments while prioritizing the most serious medical transports during periods of inclement weather. Please call the County or the vendor for questions or concerns about your transport during inclement weather.

Other General Rules and Regulations

As this is a shared ride program (except for stretcher transports), proper decorum and respect for fellow passengers etc. is expected from riders at all times.

Passengers are reminded that in these vehicles, there is no:

  • eating
  • drinking
  • smoking
 
Revised September 20, 2019         

 

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