Cone Health is working with the Greensboro Transit Agency (GTA), which runs Greensboro’s bus service, to solve a problem created when GTA streamlined its bus routes last summer.
Part of that streamlining for more efficient routes eliminated the bus stops on Route 7 at Wesley Long Hospital. The closest bus stops are now on Friendly Avenue, which can be a long walk for someone who was just released from the hospital.
Cone Health is now partnering with GTA to run a free shuttle from near the bus stops on Friendly to the main Wesley Long Hospital entrance and the North Elam Medical Plaza. The shuttle will be available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and will meet the buses when they arrive at 10 past and 40 past the hour. The shuttle will operate on a 15-minute schedule from a location on North Lindell Drive by the main parking lot entrance to the main hospital entrance and the North Elam Medical Plaza. Those leaving the hospital can ask hospital staff to contact the shuttle for a ride back to the North Lindell Drive pickup and drop-off point.
Jamilla Pinder, Cone Health assistant director of healthy communities, said, “If you are having a medical test or leaving the hospital after a stay, walking even a short distance can be too much. We are grateful that GTA was open to exploring different ways of meeting our patients’ and our community’s needs.”
Discussions between Cone Health and GTA resulted in the formation of this public/private partnership, which if successful, may result in more efforts to coordinate transportation services.
Cone Health in the past has worked with GTA to overcome transportation barriers to health care. In 2017, the Cone Health Foundation sponsored a free fare day on GTA, SCAT (the paratransit service) and HEAT.
The complete schedule is available at ridegta.com.