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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

What is Human Services Transportation?

Human services transportation (HST) includes a broad range of transportation service options designed to meet the needs of transportation disadvantaged populations, including older adults, people with disabilities, and/or individuals with lower income. Individuals have different needs and may require different transportation services depending on their needs, the size of the community they live in, and the options available. 

Public transit, available for all, is one form of HST. Other HST providers serve limited populations such as agency or institutional clients or schools. HST providers include public and private providers of transportation services, social service agencies, community health centers, aging and disability organizations, public health departments, behavioral or mental health centers, criminal justice programs, veteran’s transportation programs, vocational rehabilitation programs, schools, advocacy groups, faith-based communities, and more. 

HST includes, but is not limited to:

  • Dial-a-ride (i.e., responding to individual door-to-door requests)
  • Human service agency transportation  
  • Mileage reimbursement to volunteers or program participants 
  • Neighborhood shuttles 
  • Non-emergency medical transportation funded by Medicaid or other sources
  • Public transit (including paratransit)
  • Transportation vouchers (e.g., transit passes, taxis, etc.) 
  • Volunteer transportation services 
  • Escorted (i.e., door-through-door or hand-to-hand) transportation services

Human service agencies that provide transportation services have uniquely different missions. One agency may provide employment services while another may focus on the delivery of health care services as their primary mission. Coordinating HST can be highly beneficial to local communities.