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Guidance: Non-Medical Transportation Providers 

The Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) remains dedicated to health and public safety as the department responds to coronavirus (COVID-19). 

Current information about COVID-19 suggests that older adults and people with chronic medical conditions have a higher risk of severe illness. An important step in preventing the spread of COVID-19 is to restrict large groups of people coming together and to minimize the number of people congregating in close settings. 

Non-Medical Transportation (NMT) providers have several major tasks to consider during this state of emergency:  

  • preventing the spread of the disease, 
  • providing services during the pandemic, 
  • managing workforce impacts,
  • and conducting crisis communication.  

Transportation Providers (Agency, Independent, Homemaker/Personal Care, Non-Medical Transportation)

Updated May 8*

Ensure that vehicles and drivers

  • have the capacity to maintain 6 feet of social distance between all passengers during transportation except for those people who already live together.

Ensure all people being transported

  • have a desire to attend scheduled services; 

  • are willing and able to comply with health screening before all transportation, upon arrival, before leaving, and otherwise as needed;  

  • have discussed with the team regarding face coverings and whether one will be required for him/her; 

    • are willing and able to comply with masking, handwashing, and social distancing (and gloves if needed for activities); 

    • have documentation of medical, functional, or practical reason for the exception if not willing; 

  • and are willing and able to comply with decontamination practices when returning home by washing hands and changing clothing at a minimum. 

Ensure that the provider

  • requires face coverings (Long-Term Services and Supports Pre-Surge Planning Toolkit Tool #11) for all staff when they are within six feet of another person and whenever delivering direct support; 

  • follows team decisions regarding face coverings for each person no matter the provider or service payment type (consult ADS, VH, ICF Day Programs, and Transportation Risk/Benefit Discussion Guide); 

  • has the resources and ability to provide daily health screening of personnel and participants before entering the vehicle; 

  • requires good hygiene (frequent, thorough handwashing and avoiding face touching);  

  • has the resources to clean and sanitize location and vehicles throughout the day and between shifts/events and arranges for backup transportation if anyone presents with symptoms during the route; 

  • has the personal protective equipment (PPE) capacity to comply with gloves and masks (plus eye protection and gowns if supporting people with personal care) for direct support professionals (DSPs); 

  • is willing and able to pull the vehicle from use, clean, disinfect the vehicle, and resume using the vehicle in consultation with the local health department if symptoms are detected in any personnel or participants during activities and events. 

Information and Resources

DODD support teams are available to help county boards and providers.

DODD has set up a dedicated web page for department communications and links to helpful resources that will advise people with disabilities, their families, service providers, direct support professionals, county boards of developmental disabilities, and the community at large. 

For specific questions about COVID-19 and additional information and resources, DODD urges you to use the Ohio Department of Health’s call center. Call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634), or visit coronavirus.ohio.gov.