According to the Automobile Club of America (AAA), statistics for car crashes in the 75 and older age group is similar to those for teens. The difference is that they are far less likely to survive these car crashes than their younger counterparts. That is not even taking into account the harm that can be inflicted upon others. The AAA also says that the men outlive their safe, recommended driving age by about 6 years. Women do so by 11 years. The problem is, once you convince the elderly to surrender their keys, what are they supposed to do to get around. How can a non-driving senior manage?
Most of the burden falls to the caregiver. Eighty three percent of caregivers provide for the transportation needs of the family or charge. However, for those who don’t have a ‘resident driver’ or for those who can’t rely on their caregivers 100% of the time, there needs to be an alternative.
Alternatives for a Non-Driving Senior
The following are different categories of services available. What is appropriate wholly depends on the needs and ability of the senior citizen.
- Curb to curb or taxi services that simply pick you up and drop you off curbside. They do not help at all with mobility aids such as walkers or wheelchairs.
- Door to door car services that pick you up and drop you off. However, they do get out of the car and assist you with entering and exiting the car. Again, they may not want to help you with any walking aids or wheelchairs.
- Door through door services that provide a full service of helping you in and out of the car or van. They then help you with whatever you need including groceries and packages.
The field of door through door transportation is certainly a growing need in our society with a burgeoning senior citizen population. As more and more Baby Boomers relinquish their licenses, they will need more services to fill this needs gap. Certain companies like the for-profit SilverRide and the not-for-profit ITN America are available in specific states, but not all.
New York Options
Seniors in states like New York rely a mix of private car services, government subsidized programs and community and religious organizations to supplement transportation needs not covered by caregivers. There are ways to avoid incurring the relatively high cost of private car services. In fact, New Yorkers can look to transportation services obtained through senior centers listed with the New York City Department for the Aging. Information regarding Access-A-Ride, a subsidized door-to-door transportation service available 24/7 to those eligible can also be obtained through that department. Also, Manhattan residents can take advantage of the Community Arranged Resident Transportation (CART) Project funded by the NYC Department for the Aging which provides free transportation service to the frail elderly five days a week.
Home Health Aides Can Help
If the elderly are frail, they may very well already have a home health aide that can assist them to and from their desired destinations. David York Agency has a sizable team of skilled aides that are expert at safely transporting those of limited physical ability in and out of cars. They take their clients to and from appointments and assisting seniors in stores. We would be happy to discuss your personal care and transportation needs with you. Please call us at (718) 376-7755 or browse our website to become acquainted with all we offer. Please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.