Kinetik has cut administrative costs more than half at NEMT transportation provider M7, allowing the family business to provide more personalized service and improve the standard of care for Medicaid and other clients seeking rides in Connecticut.
But that’s just part of the story.
Kinetik also works with clients to improve the entire NEMT industry, delivering more than billing and revenue cycle management solutions, says M7 Director of Business Development Jeremy Scalzi, who met Kinetic founder and CEO Sufian Chowdhury and Chief Commercial Officer Jamie Moses a few years ago over Zoom.
“I was instantly intrigued with their concept, looking at the bigger picture,” Scalzi says. “Since then, we’ve had a lot of discussions about the direction our industry is heading, and especially the creation of higher standards for passenger safety and experience. It doesn’t stop at trip invoicing with Kinetik; they’re focused on all aspects of NEMT transportation with an eye toward raising passenger expectations and service standards throughout the national transportation provider network.”
At M7, Kinetik integrates with its dispatch partner, iCabbi, to auto-generate medical transport claims, saving the company time and money it now can dedicate to customer-facing responsibilities. The old billing system was not just disjointed and manual, but it seemed to include “a million different processes for a million different accounts,” Scalzi says.
“Kinetik standardized the invoicing process for all of our accounts,” Scalzi says. “We’ve experienced an increase with on-time invoiced payments and have significantly cleaned up our aged receivables. This has allowed us to focus more on operational issues such as customer service and driver recruiting, and to purchase additional vehicles in this time of overpriced and never-available cars.”
Kinetik is the preferred billing partner of the nation’s largest transportation providers (TPs) and transportation network companies (TNCs). Some 3,500 TPs and TNCs are now integrated with the company’s single platform, which has direct connections to more than 3,100 payors, such as Medicare and commercial insurers. Kinetik also prides itself on best-in-industry customer service.
NEMT transportation has been part of M7 since 1987, when the company began as Metro Taxi. M7 is now the largest volume Medicaid transportation provider in Connecticut, following its shift 11 years ago to primarily providing NEMT transportation.
“We believe that demand-response wheelchair transportation is the most effective way to affect positive change in a largely overlooked industry,” Scalzi says of the decision to focus on NEMT. “People must have transportation resources — specifically wheelchair transportation — when they need it, not just when it happens to be available. M7 is providing a critical service to a very underserved population.”
More than half of M7’s 160 vehicles are wheelchair-accessible. Clients can book rides on demand and pay the same rate whether they need an accessible vehicle or not, Scalzi says. In addition, M7 offers discounted rates through subsidized programs with local transit districts.
Fare equity is important, Scalzi says, sharing a conversation he had with a woman seeking transportation to her father’s funeral. “She was being quoted $450 by an ambulance company. I quoted her about $30 or so, and she broke down crying. It was a very humbling moment when I realized how significant our service is to those who rely on us.”
Another focus of M7 is community service.
At the height of the pandemic, M7 invested in shields for vehicles and PPE for drivers and passengers to safely provide transportation to Covid-positive patients when numerous others would not. The company also works with local organizations to transport refugees and immigrants to medical appointments. And each year it donates and delivers one turkey for every driver (currently about 120) to veterans.
M7 wants everyone to have the opportunity to freely move about and participate in society, hence their mission statement:
“It’s about inclusion. You can’t be included unless you’re present, and you can’t be present unless you’re able to get there. Inclusion happens when you start breaking down barriers. M7 is about expanding freedom, independence and equality in transportation.”