Brokering, Coordination and Mobility Management for Transportation Services
Mobility management centers for coordinating transportation and transportation brokerages offer unique methods for providing transportation solutions for clientele with special needs, such as those who require medical, paratransit or human service transportation. The methods can coordinate both diverse transportation programs and the resources of multiple transportation providers. These projects also frequently utilize innovative budget ideas, including full-risk or “at risk” capitated or per-member-per month (“PMPM”) or fixed-budget payment methods. These projects can also utilize recent advances in expert transportation system software (see TCS expertise described in greater detail under “Technology for Transportation”). TCS has provided consulting to entities in various roles including “pure broker,” provider / broker (or partial broker), provider to broker subcontractor, as well as various innovative teaming arrangements such as joint ventures and subcontracted call centers. TCS expertise also extends to consulting on contracts with government for mandated transportation service (frequently for entire states), and to brokering of transportation for private sector insurance companies, hospitals and managed care organizations (MCOs. which are frequently referred to as “private pay” transportation to distinguish it from transportation provided under government contracts).
TCS has provided consulting services on transportation brokering and mobility management projects across the United States. For example, TCS has direct consulting experience on statewide, regional and county brokerage and mobility management projects for government-mandated transportation including these areas:
Arkansas (2003, 2011)
California (2001 to 2011)
Massachusetts (2003, 2008-2009)
Minnesota (2006, 2009)
New Jersey (2008-2009)
New York (2007-2009)
Ohio (2006-2010, several regions)
Oklahoma (2003, 2007)
Rhode Island (2003)
In many of these cases, TCS also provided consulting services and expertise on the underlying transportation services prior to the time when the services were utilizing a brokerage model. In fact, in the case of Medicaid transportation alone, TCS has direct consulting experience with these programs in dozens of other states. No other consulting firm can compare to TCS’s experience and understanding of different regulatory markets for brokerages and mobility management. TCS also brings a wealth of capabilities with procedures, training, routing technology and other tools that clients can use for planning and the resulting brokerage or subcontracting agreement.
In addition to direct consulting experience with brokerage projects and their predecessor projects, TCS has performed innumerable analytical studies and developed extensive databases of contracting and regulation for broker-style and related transportation contracts throughout the United States. Our databases and libraries put information at the client’s fingertips throughout the brokerage project. TCS president Charles Johnson has similarly authored a number of papers on transportation brokering and coordination. TCS understands transportation brokerages at a level that no other consultant can claim, simply because of the depth of our experience in the transportation industry in specific and the depth of our expertise with brokerage in general.
TCS has worked on some of the earliest implementations of brokerages in the United States, including numerous projects in Florida’s coordinated system, which is one of the more involved systems to be found anywhere. TCS was also involved from the beginning of Kentucky’s coordinated system.
An excellent case study is TCS’s work on Kentucky’s new brokerage system, which dates to its beginning. TCS worked for two clients in two regions of the newly created program, and then in the next Kentucky RFP for the service TCS worked four clients in four regions. TCS provided comprehensive assistance to these for-profit and non-profit clients. Work extended from RFP through the proposal process, and then for three of the four into startup and ongoing brokerage operations. For two of the providers, startup activities included new call center implementations and brokerage software development or software integration assistance, call center procedures and assistance with recruitment and subcontracting with other transportation providers.
In Kentucky the brokerages handle reservations and provide gatekeeping regionally for four programs: Medicaid recipient non-emergency medical transportation, state welfare recipients going to jobs or training, transportation authorized by the Kentucky Department for the Blind and transportation authorized by the Kentucky Office of Vocational Rehabilitation. Transportation is then provided by a network of transportation subcontractors covering several counties. Providers have included state regulated non-profit and for-profit vans, mass transit providers, taxicabs and volunteers. In addition, the brokers administer expense checks to welfare recipients who provide for their own transportation. Broker responsibilities include verifying client and trip purpose eligibility, recording trip reservations, contracting for transportation providers, monitoring transportation service delivery including vehicle and driver requirements, handling consumer complaints, and administrative reporting to the State. The major portion of the payments to the brokers is “capitated,” meaning that the broker is paid based on the number of eligible participants each month, without regard to actual participation in the transportation program.
In Kentucky, as in most other locations, software requirements are an important component of administering the reservations / call center and trip brokering operation. Each of the programs, for example, has its own eligibility requirements that must be covered in the trip request interview. Trips must then be assigned to transportation providers and the trip information must be transferred at appropriate times. In Kentucky the brokers may cover some trips in-house. Trip information returned from the providers must then be stored in the database. Electronic data reporting to the State must then follow pre-defined field formats. In one region of Kentucky, TCS provided assistance for in-house call center software and database program development. In another region, TCS assisted with modification of the broker’s existing computer dispatching software to handle the brokerage needs. In both of these cases, the software was functional on day one of the contract. (TCS is also experienced with a variety of software programs specifically purposed for transportation brokering. Please see the detailed software experience description for additional information.)
Please also see our Human Service and Medical transportation references for closely related projects.