PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. — Northern Health announced today that its Connections program is expanding passenger eligibility to include more people who might require assistance with healthcare-related travel in Northern B.C.
Northern Health says its Connections service is now open to clients who meet any of three new eligibility criteria. Anyone with accessibility needs or mobility challenges, and anyone aged 60 or over will be able to ride the bus. Seniors were added to the list of allowed passengers after a report from the Office of the Seniors Advocate recently stated that access to transportation is an increasing barrier to the long term health of seniors.
Northern Health is also expanding the definition of a companion rider to include passengers who have to travel to support immediate family members who are receiving health care treatment or services outside of their home community.
“This expansion provides access to services for some of the most vulnerable people in the communities of Northern BC, the elderly and those with mobility issues,” said Minister of Health Adrian Dix. “Including an expanded definition of companions helps support families when their loved ones are receiving care in other communities.”
Northern Health says that while the expanded eligibility will help more northern residents, passengers who have scheduled medical appointments will take priority. Fares for travel are not changing, and passengers will no longer be required to book round-trip.