Human Service TransportationIntroduction
The BRTA is one of six Regional Transit Authorities in Massachusetts that broker transportation for consumers of six state agencies; the Department of Medical Assistance (known as MassHealth, DMA or Medicaid), the Department of Public Health (DPH), the Department of Developmental Services (DDS), Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC), Department of Mental Health (DMH), and Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB). The BRTA provides this service for the thirty-two cities and towns in the Berkshires, under a contract with the Human Service Transportation (HST) Office in Boston. The BRTA has contracts with eight area service providers and schedules trips with them for DMA consumers. Trips for DPH-EI, DDS, MRC, DMH, and MCB consumers are also provided under contract and scheduled in coordination with their respective state agencies.
The BRTA commenced brokerage operations in July 2001 following a successful proposal submittal. During our first year we brokered approximately 80,000 trips. Today there are approximately 213,881 trips annually brokered for all six agencies. The BRTA was again successful in our proposal to continue brokerage operations under a new five-year contract with the HST Office beginning effective July 1, 2015.
Six full time staff members work in our brokerage and provide service to customers during normal business hours. In addition to trip scheduling work, brokerage responsibilities include site inspections of vehicles and drivers, attendance at regional and state-wide meetings with HST and other brokers, oversight of service quality, auditing of vendor invoices, and billing to HST for reimbursement.Mass Health/Medicaid Transportation
This program provides non-emergency Transportation to doctor appointments for MassHealth clients with Standard, CommonHealth, and Care Plus coverage who are unable to use public transportation (due to location or a disability).
Transportation is arranged through the BRTA after an approval from Mass health is received. Members work with their doctors to submit PT-1 forms (Prescription for Transportation) to the MassHealth office. The approval process takes three to five days from when MassHealth receives the form. A PT-1 form needs to be completed for EACH specific location that a client needs transportation to. Additional information and assistance is available by calling the MassHealth Customer Service Center (800) 841-2900 or visit the MassHealth web sites www.mass.gov/masshealth.
For Fiscal Year 2015, 1,319 Berkshire County MassHealth clients received 109,780 rides to necessary medical appointments in wheelchair vehicles, livery vehicles and taxi cabs.DPH/ Early Intervention Transportation
Transportation services are provided for children up to age 3 with developmental difficulties attending any of the three Early Intervention Program sites within Berkshire County. For Fiscal Year 2015, 141 children received 4,753 rides. Anyone interested in this program may learn more by visiting www.mass.gov/dph/.Department of Developmental Services Transportation
Transportation services are provided to the five DDS Day Habilitation Programs within the county and several job site locations. Arrangements are made by contacting the consumer's DDS service coordinators or Day Hab Program Staff. For Fiscal Year 2015, 267 consumers received 97,389 rides, on 54 van routes providing transportation in wheelchair and passenger vans. Anyone interested in this program may learn more by visiting www.mass.gov/dds/.MRC-Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
For Fiscal Year 2015, 29 consumers received 795 rides to MRC sponsored Educational and Work Programs. Anyone interested in this program may learn more by visiting www.mass.gov/mrc/.Department of Mental Health
For Fiscal Year 2015, 12 consumers received 1,130 rides to DMH Pathways Programs. Anyone interested in this program may learn more by visiting www.mass.gov/dmh/.Massachusetts Commission for the Blind
For Fiscal Year 2015, BRTA did not transport any MCB consumers. Anyone interested in this program may learn more by visiting www.mass.gov/mcb/.