SINGAPORE: ComfortDelGro Group has launched a non-emergency medical transport service with an initial fleet of 10 wheelchair-accessible minibuses, with more to be added "as demand grows", said the company on Monday (Mar 8).
The "specialised medical escort transport" service will cater to the mobility needs of the elderly and people with disabilities, said ComfortDelGro in a media release.
Bookings during peak periods on weekdays - from 7am to 11am and from 3pm to 7pm - are S$113 for a one-way trip and S$225 for a two-way trip.
Off-peak bookings from 11.01am to 2.59pm on weekdays are S$95 for a one-way trip and S$189 for a two-way trip.
The minibus, which can accommodate up to three wheelchairs and five seated passengers, can also be booked for one-way or two-way trips at an hourly rate ranging from S$63 to S$75, depending on the time it is booked.
Bookings must be made two days in advance via the newly formed subsidiary ComfortDelGro MedCare's website or WhatsApp at 8428 8828. Payment can also be made online or via PayNow.
FIRST AID-TRAINED DRIVERS
The 10 minibuses come with raised roofs and are retrofitted with automatic hydraulic lifts, safety retractors and forward-facing seats "to ensure both wheelchair users and their caregivers are able to sit comfortably", said ComfortDelGro.
Drivers offering the service are able to administer first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and operate an automated external defibrillator (AED). They are also "trained to help" wheelchair users and passengers with dementia and have been put through a driving assessment by ComfortDelGro Driving Centre, it added.
Where needed, the service may also include a transport assistant.
The new service is aimed at "not only expanding our transport solutions, but also adopting inclusive practices to serve this under-served community in Singapore", said ComfortDelGro MedCare CEO Lim Tien Hock.
"ComfortDelGro MedCare will ensure that people with mobility issues can get from where they are to where they want to be, in a safe and reliable manner.
"With such transport options, we are able to help enrich their quality of life and enhance their connectedness to the broader society,” added Mr Lim.
In 2018, ComfortDelGro acquired Australia-based National Patient Transport, which operates non-emergency patient transportation across Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia, said the group.
"With the experience gleaned from the operations in Australia, the group is now able to roll out a full-fledged medical assistance transport service in Singapore," it said.