Many elderly and handicapped people need transportation to the doctor and our tax money pays for the ride. But one Omaha woman says she was left stranded. Rena White says, " I didn't know which way to go or how to get home."
Remembering a trip to the doctor's office brings Rena White to tears because of treatment by the transportation service. Unity Transportation is paid with tax money to give Medicaid patients like Rena rides to the doctor. A driver dropped her off for a 12:30pm appointment but didn't return.
Rena says, " I just stood there and I cried and cried and the nurses asked me what's the matter and I told them I was stranded and I couldn't get home." Rena says she spent three hours pacing in and out of the clinic until a patient's relative offered her a ride home about six o’clock.
The owner of the transportation company tells Fact Finders the system is not set up for a round trip ticket. His van driver did drop off the woman at the clinic but he says he didn't receive a pickup order from the state contractor.
But according to Intelliride, the state's dispatch service, a reservation specialist booked the trips including a return trip.
Fact Finders returned to the office of unity transportation. The owner wouldn't come to the door. "The state report says you were supposed to pick her up. Do you want to comment?" The owner answers, "Get out from here."
Rena does have something to say to the stranger at the clinic who gave her a ride home. She says, " I’d say god bless you, I appreciate you and thank you."
Not only disabled but new to Omaha the 54 year old has no choice but to continue booking rides through Medicaid paid transportation. She has hopes next time it will be a round-trip.
Nebraska Health and Human Services tells Fact Finders the stranding of the woman will be investigated.