We conducted a survey of local rehabilitation providers, who all agreed that lack of transportation was a serious barrier to services for their clients. Further research into the proliferation and success of Nonemergency Medical Transportation (NEMT) to address this challenge nationally supported our survey results and offered a well tested model for Danny’s Ride to follow.
Research into the prevalence of transportation as a barrier to recovery resources is consistent. Transportation to the services necessary to support an individual’s recovery from substance use disorder is regularly identified as a significant barrier, in both urban and rural communities.
According to National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) statistics compiled over a 12-month period, 21.6 million Americans aged 12 or older needed treatment for drug and/or alcohol abuse but, alarmingly, only 2.3 million received care. The simple lack of rides to the doctors’ offices, ambulatory care centers or other places for treatment has created a barrier for millions in need of lifesaving care.
NEMT improves the likelihood of successful substance use disorder treatments. Once survey found that respondents reported attending 16.4 treatments per month on average with NEMT and would expect to attend only 4.3 treatments per month without it.
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Transportation to outpatient rehab, 12-step meetings and other recovery resources is often a significant barrier to recovery, and Danny would want us to help mitigate that. By helping others who live with substance use disorder, Danny continues to make a difference in our world.