March 16, 2021
If you have Apple Health, you can get help.
The vaccine is an important part of ending the COVID-19 pandemic. If you’re eligible in Phase 1B- Tier 1, you should get yours now! And if you have Apple Health (or Medicaid), you might even be able to get a ride there. Transportation barriers shouldn’t keep you from getting protected from COVID-19.
The Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) offers help with transportation for non-emergency health care appointments. Non-emergency visits are routine check-ups or other visits that don’t need treatment right away. Vaccine visits are non-emergency, so the HCA can help people get to a COVID-19 vaccine site. This is free for those with Apple Health who have no other way to get to appointments.
You are eligible for transportation help if:
- You have a current ProviderOne services card (the Apple Health ID card)
- You have no other way to get to your health care appointment
- The health care visit is covered by your Apple Health program. Visit the Apple Health website for more information about covered services (link in English).
If you’re eligible, a transportation broker can help you find a way to get to your appointment. They can help with options like public transit, gas cards, taxis, ferries, or accessible vehicles like wheelchair vans.
To get a ride for a health care visit, call your county’s transportation broker. The HCA keeps a list of transportation brokers for each county here (link in English). All brokers have language support for callers who do not speak English.
When you call, be ready to give this information:
- Your ProviderOne services card
- Your pick-up address
- Your provider’s name and phone number
- The appointment date and time
- The type of healthcare appointment (vaccine, dialysis, dental, etc.)
- Your return time, if you know it
Make sure to plan ahead when setting up transportation. Try to call at least 7–14 days before your appointment so you’re more likely to get help.
No matter how you travel, don’t forget to wear your mask! Masks are required on any public transportation in Washington. This includes busses, trains, taxis, rideshares, and ferries. Wearing a mask keeps you, your fellow riders, and the transportation operator safe. Check out our mask guidance for more information.
Remember, Apple Health covers the COVID-19 vaccine. In general, no one will have to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine. That includes people with Apple Health, private insurance, or no insurance. Learn more about cost on our COVID-19 Vaccine webpage.
Don’t have Apple Health but still need transportation help? Call Washington 2–1–1 to find other available resources.
If you live in Stevens, Ferry, Pend Oreille and Spokane counties contact Special Mobility Services.
TDD/TTY: 509-534-8566 or 800-821-7167
To view the full article on transportation assistance click here.
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Dr. Michelle Parks is treating patients of all ages at our Lake Spokane Dental Clinic. New patients are welcome! Most insurance plans accepted including Medicare, Medicaid, Apple Health Plans, Delta Dental, and private insurance. To schedule an appointment please call 509-464-0002.