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GRTC offering free 'on-demand' rides to vaccine appointments

GRTC bus.jpeg
Posted at 8:21 PM, Mar 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-13 11:43:09-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Richmond and Henrico residents in need of a ride to their vaccine appointments can now get one for free from the Greater Richmond Transit Corporation (GRTC).

GRTC announced Friday they now offer free on-demand rides to customers that need help getting to their vaccination appointment. Current GRTC bus rides are free but this program was introduced for those that may live too far from a bus stop.

The program is in partnership with the transit company UZURV to deliver passengers to and from their critical vaccine appointments.

“Vaccines are available right now for the most vulnerable people in our region, yet there are many who have no transportation to vaccine clinics and no access to bus routes serving the clinics," said GRTC CEO
Julie Timm. "GRTC’s partnership with local Health Departments and UZURV will extend door-to-door service beyond our normal bus routes for vaccination appointments, which will ensure mobility limitations and limited access to transit are not barriers to health.”

The vaccine trips are in coordination with the Virginia Department of Health and funded through the CARES Act as apart of the pandemic response efforts.

"We are so grateful to our partners who are thinking intentionally about the transportation needs of our communities," said Jackie Lawrence, Director of Health Equity at Richmond and Henrico Health Districts. "Transportation is a significant barrier to many in our most impacted communities... this helps make sure everyone who wants a vaccine can access one."

Rides are scheduled by Richmond-Henrico Health department workers and other community partners that are utilizing a relationship based approach to reach undeserved communities. Once a person is registered they will be contacted to get scheduled for a vaccine appointment and outreach workers will then set them up with a ride if needed.

“I’m so glad that UZURV is able to provide drivers and vehicles to support GRTC with the vaccination effort. Thanks to the Virginia Department of Health and GRTC, UZURV will help many people in our community get to their appointments by providing free, on-demand trips with credentialed drivers prepared to assist people. We are pleased to have a role supporting the health of our community and continuing to serve our long-term partner, GRTC," says UZURV CEO John Donlon.

You can find more information on GRTC rides here.