Individuals must apply and be determined eligible in order to receive subsidized transportation services.
PERSONAL ESCORTS AND SERVICE ANIMALS
We provide assistance to board and disembark. At the time of registration, a passenger is required to let us know if he or she must travel with an escort, and will be reminded to bring one along at the time of making a reservation. The same is true of service animals. There is no charge for an escort or service animal.
To receive service, passengers must pay a fare upon boarding, but their escorts do not. Fares may be paid by cash or check. Prior arrangements may be made with the Transportation office staff to pay for rides in advance.
Copays must be exact change and will be collected upon EACH entry to a vehicle.
Our defined service area includes all of Wayne County, Tafton, Carbondale area, Clarks Summit area, Scranton area, and Wilkes-Barre area.
Reservations will be accepted as far in advance as six months and not later than 3:00 PM, two business days before your appointment. Trips MUST be booked at least two business days in advance. Booking early will more likely reserve a seat.
Transportation riders MUST call the office to arrange additional trips. For example, if you anticipate making a stop to a pharmacy after your doctor visit, please book the trip from the doctor’s office to the pharmacy at the time you book your reservation. We cannot accept requests for extra stops on the day and time of a trip. For example, transportation riders should allow for medications and food as needed. Please call to cancel if the stop does not become necessary.
Reservation takers will route and schedule each trip request at the time the reservation is placed. Ride confirmation numbers and “ready times” will be given to the passenger. Times and/or days may need to be negotiated. Passengers should expect the bus within 30 minutes after the negotiated “ready time,” and must board the bus upon arrival. A delay by the passenger in boarding more than five minutes after the “ready time” may result in a service denial.
CANCELLATIONS, LATENESS, AND NO SHOWS
Passengers must cancel unwanted trips at least two hours in advance.
Waiting times are limited and counted as a “no show” if a consumer does not get on the vehicle at pick-up.
A documented pattern of untimely cancellation notice, “no shows,” or lateness for reasons within the passenger’s control will result in service denial on a long-term basis. For more information, please see the No Show section, below.
Schedules will allow adequate time for passengers to complete boarding or disembarking from the vehicle.
PROHIBITING DISRUPTIVE BEHAVIOR
Service will immediately be denied on a long-term basis to passengers who engage in violent, seriously disruptive, or illegal conduct.
Such conduct includes, but is not limited to: threats or fear of physical or verbal abuse; unlawful harassment, including unwelcome verbal, nonverbal, or physical behavior having sexual or racial connotations; unauthorized use of equipment on the vehicle; voluntarily and repeatedly violating bus riding rules, including smoking on the bus, standing while it is in motion, eating or drinking without medical indication, or defacing equipment; refusing to comply with other requirements specified in the policies above; or providing false information in order to qualify for certification.
LIFT AND SECUREMENT USE
Paratransit is able to transport passengers with wheelchairs that do not weigh more than 800 pounds when occupied. Wheelchairs and their users shall be secured at all times during boarding, debarking, and transporting operations. Passengers who need the lift to board but are not wheelchair users may use the lift while standing.
MEDICAL ASSISTANCE POLICIES AND REGULATIONS
The Medical Assistance Transportation Program (MATP) is a transportation service available to Medical Assistance customers in Wayne County. MATP is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare. In Wayne County the MATP Program is run by Wayne County Transportation System.
Our program offers transportation or mileage reimbursement to help you get to medical care or services from a Medical Assistance provider. We are required to provide you with the least expensive, most appropriate transportation service available that will meet your needs.
You can use MATP services to go to medical appointments or to get to any service Medical Assistance pays for. These medical services include therapies, tests, dental visits, trips to the pharmacy to get prescriptions, mental health treatment, drug & alcohol treatment, and trips to medical equipment suppliers.
You cannot use MATP for any of these reasons:
– If you need emergency ambulance transportation
– For non-medical trips such as for grocery shopping or for social activities
– To obtain medical care that is not covered by Medical Assistance
OTHER MEDICAL TRANSPORTATION RESOURCES
If we are not able to meet your medical transportation needs, you will be referred to your caseworker at the local County Assistance Office (CAO).
Depending on where you are going, what your needs are, and the costs involved, we could provide you with transportation through the shared ride program, a sub-contractor or mileage reimbursement.
If you have a car available, or if you know someone who has a car and who can take you to your medical appointment, we will provide you mileage reimbursement if it is the least costly, most appropriate service available. We will reimburse you at the rate of 12 cents per mile. We will also reimburse you for your actual parking expenses and tolls if you provide receipts showing how much you paid.
If you want to claim mileage reimbursement for a trip, you must tell us in advance. We will send you a form to fill out to tell us how far you traveled and whether you had any parking or toll costs. You can turn in your reimbursement request right after a trip or you can wait until the middle of the month or the end of the month. REIMBURSEMENT CHECKS WILL BE ISSUED ONCE A MONTH and will be due in our office ON OR BEFORE the 10th of the next month. If any of the due dates fall on a weekend or holiday, the voucher will be due the next business day. Any voucher received after a due date will be held for the following batch of checks.
We are responsible for providing or for arranging your transportation to get you to the medical care you need.
If you are enrolled in the Medical Assistance ACCESS Plus Program, you can use MATP services to get to your selected or assigned Personal Care Physician (PCP) and any specialist to whom your PCP refers you. You can use MATP to go to the behavioral health provider in your network who can meet your needs. You can use MATP to go to a more distant behavior health provider, if you give the MATP information that you medically need to go to that provider.
Transportation to the medical service will be arranged by a) the direct staff of the MATP or b) an outside vendor when appropriate, or c) if the distance is too far from the MATP Transportation area, the customer will be referred to the local CAO to follow procedures for extraordinary needs for transportation.
PICK UP AND DROP OFF GUIDELINES
If we will be transporting you using shared ride or a taxi, you will be told in advance the time you will be picked up by the MATP driver. Please be ready ahead of time. Our drivers are required to pick you up no sooner than 15 minutes before your scheduled time and no later than 15 minutes after your scheduled pick-up time. Our policy is to drop you off at your provider’s office no more than 1 hour before your scheduled appointment, and to pick you up no later than 1 hour after your appointment is finished. If we do not meet these timelines and you are kept waiting, you should call us at 570-253-4280 to report the problem and to see if alternative arrangements can be made.
A pick-up time will be given to each customer. The customer must be ready at a minimum of 15 minutes PRIOR to the pickup time provided by the customer. Customers may be picked up as much as two hours prior to their appointment time, depending on location of customer and location of destination in relationship to the customer’s home.
PORTABLE OXYGEN AND PERSONAL RESPIRATORS
Portable oxygen, personal respirators or other life support equipment is permitted on board Wayne County Transportation System vehicles. The equipment must be small enough to fit into the vehicle and be secured.
Service dogs are welcome on Wayne County Transportation System vehicles. Upon a client’s request to ride with a service dog, Transportation staff may ask the following questions:
1. Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability? and
2. What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?
URGENT CARE TRANSPORTATION
Urgent Care is any illness or severe condition which under reasonable standards of medical practice would be diagnosed and treated within a 24-hourt period and if left untreated could rapidly become a crisis or emergency situation; or discharge from a hospital will be delayed until services are approved; or a member’s/consumer’s ability to avoid hospitalization depends upon prompt approval of services.
At some point, you may need transportation on short notice for an urgent care matter. Urgent care includes any situation where your medical provider has told you that you need to come to their office, or to obtain some other medical treatment or service, that same day or within the next 24 hours. We have a process for responding to any urgent care requests and will make every effort to help you get to the medical care you need.
If you need transportation for an urgent care matter, your doctor may request an urgent care ride for you by calling 1-800-662-0780, 24 hours a day/7 days a week. However, urgent care does not mean emergent care. If your condition is that medically serious, your doctor should order an ambulance. If the service cannot be accomplished through the MATP organization within 24 hours due to excessive distances or other issues, the customer will then be redirected to the CAO who will arrange for extraordinary transportation. If you have questions regarding the transportation options available to you, please contact our office.
A cancellation is defined as providing notice to the Transportation Office PRIOR to 7:30 AM on the day of your scheduled pick up. Customers may cancel utilizing the agency’s answering machine that is accessible twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. The number is 570-253-4280. Excessive use of cancellations may result in sanctions, such as
1. the customer may be required to call agency each day prior to pick up to confirm ride.
2. the customer may be denied transportation for a designated period of time. (Please see the SANCTIONS section, below.)
A no show is defined as customer failing to cancel his/her scheduled ride(s) when he or she no longer needs or requires a ride, and the driver arrives or is en route to the customer’s residence for scheduled pick up.
1. Failure to contact the transportation office PRIOR to 7:30 AM on the day of your scheduled pick up will result in a “no show,” and sanctions will begin.
2. If the customer is not on board the vehicle within five minutes of the arrival of transportation, the customer will be considered a “no show,” and sanctions will begin.
The Wayne County Transportation System may take the following actions with consumers who repeatedly no-show:
1. Require consumers to reconfirm transportation details the morning of or the night before. If details cannot be confirmed, the ride will not be provided.
2. Require consumers to use a single provider assigned by Wayne County Transportation. Consumers would be required to reconfirm transportation details the morning of or the night before. If details cannot be confirmed, the ride will not be provided.
3. Require consumers to schedule trips no more than one ride at a time
4. Require consumers to travel with an escort
Exceptions may be heard on a case-by-case basis. Examples of an exception may be hospitalization of the customer or death in the family.
Circumstances that are exceptions to this policy do NOT count as no-shows. Exceptions may be limited to the following: Customer called prior to 7:30 AM, but the driver was not notified and showed up at the customer’s curb; the driver is over 30 minutes late for the scheduled pick up; or the customer could not call to cancel the ride due to an emergency situation.
We are required to give you a written notice if we deny your request for MATP transportation or for mileage reimbursement. We are also required to give you written notice in advance if we plan to reduce or change your services or suspend you from the program for any length of time. The notice will tell you the reasons for our action, when the action will go into effect, and your rights to appeal from the action.
UNCOOPERATIVE AND/OR OFFENSIVE BEHAVIOR
Uncooperative and/or offensive behavior is defined as a customer’s persistent behavior that is found to be offensive or threatening to other customers, the driver, or the general public. Some examples are, but are not limited to, the following: offensive language, rude behavior, personal hygiene concerns, intoxication, refusal to use a seat belt, etc.
There is no smoking, eating, consuming alcoholic beverages, or carrying of firearms allowed on county vehicles.
1. The Agency reserves the right to immediately suspend, terminate, or deny entry to a vehicle or continued stay on a vehicle to those who may pose a threat to the safety of others.
2. Those customers who have been verbally and in writing told to stop persistent bad behavior, or who are uncooperative with services, may risk suspension or permanent termination of services.
3. The sanctions listed below apply. You will be provided with a copy of these policies, which outline the agency’s appeal information and fair hearing information at the time of each offense.
Some WCTS vehicles have a video recording system installed. This system records areas inside and outside the vehicle. These recordings are normally overwritten after a period of one to three weeks, depending on how often the vehicle is used. WCTS does not keep archive data on all recordings, only those that involve a significant reported incident.
A complaint is any issue, dispute, or objection you express to us about our agency, or about the coverage, operations, or policies of our MATP. If you have a complaint about our services, about how you were treated by our staff or a driver, or about our policies and procedures, please tell us. We will record your complaint, investigate it, and respond to you within 5 working days.
1. Inform transportation either verbally or in writing of your complaint. (The complaint will then be documented by the Agency.)
2. If you are dissatisfied with the representative’s response or resolution, please call 570-253-4280 or 1-800-662-0780.
3. If no resolution is reached, you may want to follow to the next level. Contact our Transportation Director at 570-253-4280 or write to The Wayne County Transportation System, 323 10th Street, Honesdale, PA 18431.
4. If the complaint is not resolved by at least 2 levels of review at WCTS, it will be forwarded to the Office of Medical Assistance Programs in Harrisburg for review.
SECTION 601 OF TITLE VI OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964
The Wayne County Transportation System is in compliance with Section 601 of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Any person who is, or seeks to be, a patron of any public vehicle which is operated as a part of, or in conjunction with, a project shall be given the same access, seating, and other treatment with regard to the use of such vehicle as other persons without regard to their race, color, or national origin.
No person or group of persons shall be discriminated against with regard to the routing, scheduling, or quality of transportation service furnished as a part of the project on the basis of race, color, or national origin. Frequency of service, age and quality of vehicles assigned to routes, quality of stations serving different routes, and location of routes may not be determined on the basis of race, color, or national origin.
Any person who believes he/she has been discriminated against should contact the Wayne County Transportation Director at 570-253-4280 or the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) at:
Federal Transit Administration
1760 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-4124
Telephone Number: (215)-656-7100