Oct. 8 (UPI) -- Ride-share company Lyft said Thursday it will partner with electronic health records firm Epic to help patients with transportation to receive medical care.
Lyft said the deal will help vulnerable populations find much-needed transportation. Thousands of U.S. hospitals and health systems use Epic to store medical records electronically, it noted.
The companies said the service will be integrated into Epic's workflow, allowing hospital staff to arrange transportation without the patient ever needing to use the Lyft app.
"Staff can send reliable rides directly from a patient's profile," Lyft said in a statement. "Patients can easily get to their appointments and back home after the visit without needing an app."
Lyft said the partnership will simplify patient service, avert missed appointments, decrease wait times and give hospitals another point to measure patient outcomes.
"We're also working toward giving health systems the ability to generate reports that make it easier to measure the impact of ride-share on health system," the companies said.
"Potentially even tracking patient segments to proactively identify patients that would benefit from a Lyft ride."
The partnership allows Lyft to compete with rival Uber, which partnered with health records company Cerner last year to give patients rides for non-emergency appointments.
"Access to reliable transportation is a common barrier to seeking healthcare, especially for our most vulnerable patients," Dr. David Carmouche, Ochsner Health senior vice president of community care, said in a statement.