Health Forward partnership provides free rides to health care and social service locations

Expanded program will support 75-100 rides each month for Wyandotte County residents in select ZIP codes.

Kansas City, MO — Health Forward Foundation is partnering with Uber Health and the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas, to provide free transportation for residents in select ZIP codes.

Free rides are available to access health care providers, government agencies, social service offices, case managers, and other resources. The partnership is an expansion of the existing Transportation Access Program that provides free transit to COVID-19 vaccination sites.

Residents living in the 66101, 66102, 66104, and 66105 ZIP codes can schedule a ride by dialing 3-1-1, visiting ughealth.info/Transport, or working with a community health worker.

Priority ZIP codes were selected through consideration of vaccination rates, incomes, population, the number of families under the poverty level, and the number of children who missed childhood vaccinations.

“The pandemic has brought already existing health injustices to the forefront of policymaking,” said McClain Bryant Macklin, Health Forward Director of Policy and Strategic Initiatives. “Health Forward has long recognized that transportation is a significant barrier to health in many communities. This partnership is helping people and families access the resources they need to thrive.”

“The Unified Government appreciates and values this partnership with Health Forward Foundation, helping provide free rides and transportation to medical and social care appointments for area residents that face significant barriers to health,” said Mayor/CEO David Alvey of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, Kansas City, Kansas. “Programs and partnerships like this help reduce health disparities and improve the quality of life for everyone in our community.”

“Lack of adequate transportation is a sizable barrier for accessing physical, emotional, and social health services,” said Juliann Van Liew, Director of the Unified Government Public Health Department. “The need for these services has only increased, as COVID-19 has affected so many people in a variety of ways. It has adversely contributed to our social and emotional health outcomes. These dollars will provide necessary rides for individuals and their families who otherwise would not be able to access these services or get the help they need as the pandemic continues.”