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New local transportation option for disabled coming soon

Friday, March 07, 2014   by: Darren Taylor

Another transportation option will soon be available for Sault Ste. Marie’s disabled.

Home and Health Mobility’s Lise Moncion and Peter Miser (pictured) have leased two new, modified 2014 Dodge Grand Caravans and will provide a new service to get disabled customers to and from important appointments.

The vans have been modified to be wheelchair accessible.

Moncion told SooToday.com: “I’ve been working at the Davey Home as a nurse for the past nine years, and I see the need.”

“Peter and I were discussing what services the community needs, we’ve been doing our research and here we are.”

The vehicles will soon be marked with Home and Health Mobility decals, with all special equipment serviced, when necessary, by Shoppers Home Health Care Seating and Mobility Consultant Rob Stopar.

Home and Health Mobility, a new, locally-owned company recently granted with a license to operate its vehicles by the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service, will have its office located at 377 John Street.  

Home and Health Mobility’s office will be open March 17, with the company’s first official driving date March 31.

The vans will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.

The office will receive calls from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday at 705 575 9968, and will also be reachable by e-mail at homeandhealthmobility@yahoo.ca

The company’s website is still in the development stage, Moncion said. 

Moncion said it will be advisable to call one day in advance to arrange transportation, but added it is possible the company will eventually be able to provide same-day service.

For Saturday runs, customers will definitely have to call Home and Health Mobility at least one day in advance to arrange transportation, as the office itself will be closed Saturdays.

The City of Sault Ste. Marie offers Parabus service for people in wheelchairs or those with other physical disabilities.

Gateway to Mobility is the only other private transportation provider for the disabled in Sault Ste. Marie.

“We’ve hired staff, an office clerk and one full-time driver so far, and we’re still in the process of looking to hire our second full-time driver and one part-time driver,” Moncion said.

Miser emphasized: “We’re taking extra time to find the right people to be drivers…we want people who are going to show that extra care and that extra time, so that our customers are happy.”

Moncion added that Home and Health Mobility’s services will be strictly for people in wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs or scooters who cannot access conventional transportation. 

Miser told us the Home and Health Mobility cost of a round trip (to Sault Area Hospital, for example) will be $60.

 

Comments
18
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Dixiepup 3/7/2014 9:30:10 PM Report

60 dollars? Are u fricken kidding me? Most disabled people can't afford that!
mel1234 3/7/2014 10:01:49 PM Report

This is fantastic!!! While working in long term care (as a nurse) I also saw the need for this service. I am very happy that those who require the services will have another option.... $60 round trip is very reasonable compared to current rates in other places. This would be cheaper than a round trip cab ride from my house to the hospital and back!! Congratulations on your new venture, and thank you for filling a need in our community!
Pakadeva 3/7/2014 11:43:59 PM Report

Fabulous idea! Congratulations Lise & Peter! I know Lise very well, a lovely nurse who will be well aware of what a disabled patient needs. From start to finish is time consumption people, a cab would very likely cost a lot more.
I have a friend who often can't get a drive for Dr. appointments etc. because current vehicles are unavailable. I will definitely pass the news on. Another step forward in helping seniors & disabled folks get around. God Bless you!
abba 3/8/2014 12:46:14 AM Report

Parabus is a fantastic service with courteous, professional drivers. $2.50 one way. My Mother and I use it regularly for doctor and hospital visits.
Floyd 3/8/2014 1:28:07 AM Report

Hope they handle themselves better than the Parabus drivers....just sayin'
Pakadeva 3/8/2014 2:17:23 AM Report

@abba
Parabus is government funded, otherwise $2.50 wouldn't even pay for gas across town. This is a needed service for those who cannot get the parabus when needed or in emergency. It's a needed service & government is not offering anything more than we already have right now.
grandmahas2 3/8/2014 7:28:28 AM Report

I work with individuals with multi-needs. They are given a comfort allowance each month of about 115.00. If they were to use this service what do they for the rest of the month. People with disabilities are the ones than can least afford and they are are always ones affected.
mel1234 3/8/2014 9:21:31 AM Report

It seems as if those who are complaining of cost- have NO clue of the cost of the current private (non-government)services available.... many times parabus and/or gateway to mobility is not available... this is absolutely a service that is lacking in our city and I am excited for those who will be able to use it. Hopefully those with financial limitations will maintain and possibly even have more opportunity to access openings on the parabus service.
auntiepam 3/8/2014 9:29:46 AM Report

I agree people with disabilties can not afford $60 I will stick to the city bus or para bus thanks
mly 3/8/2014 11:02:21 AM Report

I have TONS of experience utilizing services for individuals in wheelchairs. While a $60 charge is inline with what another private company in our area would charge it is equally unacceptable. This is taking advantage of people who have limited financial resources and limited access to public transportation. While it is true that they don't have government funding to subsidize their costs it is not a noble effort to charge $60 for a trip where $15-$20 would reasonably cover costs. I had hoped that if someone wanted to make a change in this field of work they would set standards that other companies would have to compete with and not gouge users with the monopoly they have due to limited choices.
newshound69 3/8/2014 11:24:28 AM Report

$60? Are you serious? I can get a cab to and from the hospital for less (my cost is almost half that price)and at most have to call a couple hours in advance on a weekday to make sure I have one lined up for a school run time. I may have to wait a bit if I call from the hospital during school run times but even still, shortening my wait isn't worth the extra almost $30 to get this. It may be useful and needed but this price is a good way to make it unaffordable for most.
roxpin 3/8/2014 11:53:18 AM Report

Its good that they charge 60$ they will only be transporting the rich elderly so sets a limit for who they can take , I will charge 32.50 and take 90% of the clientele
Sunnidelight 3/8/2014 1:13:21 PM Report

My guess is that if most disabled people had an extra sixty dollars for the little luxuries, their first choice would be food, not lining the pockets of those who would exploit them.
I'm In 3/8/2014 1:51:00 PM Report

Thanks to the voters who vote Liberal and PC, who have eroded or are continuing to erode our Social Safety Net which makes it impossible for the poor/disabled to afford this type of assistance. As the old saying goes the richer you are the easier you are able to afford these services, soon we will be like the USA and pay for all health care, if we don't already.
Jamie333 3/8/2014 4:02:50 PM Report

Excellent idea, there is definitely a high demand for a service like this in our community. However, I agree with previous posts, most people who would utilize their vans (people on ODSP and elderly folks on a tight budget) could not afford to do so on a regular basis.
Zenobia 3/8/2014 5:23:13 PM Report

People on ODSP can have their medical transportation costs covered. As long as they provide verification of their medical appointments and verification from a doctor as to how they need to travel to these appointments,(i.e. cab vs public transportation) they will receive this benefit to cover the actual costs. So, essentially, taxpayers will be paying this for those in receipt of social assistance.
ladybuglove 3/9/2014 9:31:24 AM Report

Congrats to Lise and Peter on bringing a well needed service to our community. I'm also a nurse in SSM and have seen the decline in services for the disabled. In their defense $30 for a one-way trip is not unreasonable considering costs associated with this service. Their cost is the same as their competition. I'm sure fuel costs and liability insurance alone justify this price. From personal experience, a regular cab service costs over $20 and the service isn't always the best. I agree that Parabus is the most cost effective transportation for the disabled but their services are not always available. Good Luck & Best Wishes to you both!!
IB-fine 3/11/2014 1:10:09 PM Report

While it's great to have another service offering the disabled another choice, both this one and Gateway is too expensive for someone on ODSP or CPP. And if they are in long term care that would be almost half of their comfort allowance for the month.
Yes you can get ODSP to cover transportation costs but paperwork has to be done before hand and it takes up to a business week for approval and then comes in on the next check!
So if you apply for the extra cost at the first week of the month you won't get the money until the end of the month. Plus unless this is an ongoing, monthly/bi-monthly trip it won't be on the following check. Other times if it is a regular trip the money will go directly to the cab service and the recipient doesn't see the money at all. So it's not like one could just call up ODSP and the ride is instantly covered.

I'm glad they are being selective about drivers who work for them, and understanding the disabled needs. But unless you have the disposable income for this, you are going to be on the para-bus, family or cab!
Comments
18
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of SooToday.com. If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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