If a person is able to get Federal Medicaid benefits, they are often also able to get free transportation to and from medically approved appointments. But rules do vary by age, state and so forth. And some HMO's and other health care plans have this service available also.
Medical Transportation Management MTM Non Emergency Medicaid Transportation Provider NET, MTM for short, is a transportation provider for the above in many states. Most of these contracts pay MTM a flat rate per month and then MTM hires Vendors to actually provide the transportation service at a rate paid per mile. So the less money that MTM can pay Vendors, the more they earn for their Family owned Business
A few key points to be on the look out for.They promise you all this new business and very few dead head miles. (Sounding like a trucking co.) But in reality they hire so many vendors that there is not enough trips to go around. And they control who gets what trips. So needless to say, those Vendors who are dating the people who assign the trips get the better trips and thus they make more money. While a Vendor like us, who had invested over $100,000 in updated vehicles and who had a customer compliant ratio of only 4 per 10,000 trips, sits to the side and goes broke. But at least we have AC and Heat in our units!
Payday, what a joke. Three times in 5 months they could not get my funds in the bank on the correct day. Each time they sent out some faxes the day before, AFTER 6pm, advising of such. Most Vendors are not at the office that time of day. And heck even there own Vendor Service Personal was not aware of said faxes. So now I would have employees looking at me to get paid, but I could not pay them because I had not gotten paid. (Yes for the rebuttal people, a large stable biz would have a few payrolls in the bank. I did not as I paid out 93% of those funds in fuel and labor. I paid a living wage to my drivers, not a flat starving wage as other Vendors do. $450 plus per week vs $250.)
So not only was I personally harmed but my drivers would not get paid on time. MTM would pay us 5-6 days late. One driver had to hire a babysitter for her kids so she could work. She was a hard working single Mom who was trying to do better and get her family out of the Housing Projects. But when she could not pay her babysitter, the babysitter quit. Now this driver was only available to work during school hours and that does not work well in our business. So she ended up losing her job, because of late payments.
Trips.they tell you that they use a Geo-Code system to assign the trips. And that you may have as many address in the system as you have vehicles contracted. So common sense would say that you would use addresses that are near the better paying trips. This is what I did and it worked well for a while. Then I noticed my trips from one location fall off. I questioned the staff of the Hospital and they said that they where still calling in lots of trips. Them I questioned my Vendor Support Person, and she verified that yes trips are being sent from there, but that a Vendor based 75 miles away was getting all the trips. But there was nothing she/could/would do about this.
After the second late payment, I advised by email that I would no longer contract to them if I was not paid when they had contracted to pay me. On the third nonpayment payday, I ordered all my units to complete the trip they were currently involved with and then to return to the office. We could not operate without payment. MTM was informed of this decision at the same time as I had the Vendor Support Person on speaker phone as I made the radio broadcast.
After begging and pleading on the part of MTM, we went back to work in a few hours with a promise that a check was being sent FedEx to us. This was of limited good as a check deposited on Friday, the funds are not available till Monday. But it was better than nothing.
Five days after receiving the check, MTM cancelled all my trips and advised me they no longer would honor our contract. Ok.I was making a living before I ever heard of them and still do. But I had to lay drivers off. Good, hard working folks who where just trying to get ahead in life are now jobless.
Then comes the drop of the BIG SHOE. In order to receive my last check from MTM for services we had preformed, they wanted to do an audit. Not a biggie, we had done plenty of those over the years. And of over 3000 trips that they had audited, only ONE came back on me. Someone had forgotten to fax a piece of paper for a trip and so we got ONE bad mark. They demanded that we not send copies, but the original paper work. I am not a fool. I made a set of copies and sent them. (For the record it was 27 boxes of 8.5x11 sheets of paper. The boxes are the ones that you store files in that are 3 foot long. Cost me appox $1200 in Labor, boxes, paper and ink)
Now are you guessing the end of this story? I fail the audit with FIFTY PER CENT of my trips being refused payment. So how can I fight them, I send them copies of the originals that they already have. Guess what, they still cant find the paper work and thus they can not pay me. So why after three years of hardly any problems did I not transport half of these people? And why did they not call in and complain that we failed to show? None did.
So yes they failed to pay me $7,000 which was my last amount due. But in doing just a little research and some phone calls. I found this is the way they always work. In 2005, they lost the contract in their home state after settling with the Atty Gen for $17 MILLION dollars in Medicaid Fraud. And they never paid those vendors in that state the last check. Now the same thing has happened in Philly. And low and behold, thanks to our new governor in ARKANSAS, the contract with Medicaid and MTM in Arkansas will end on Jan 31st. So following a track record, there will be even more people who will not get paid.
JUST BEWARE of who and what if you are in Transportation.
Next time, STOPS Transportation of Fla and lack of payment/return phone calls.
Little Rock, Arkansas