Everything drivers need to know about Uber Medics

Everything drivers need to know about Uber Medics


One of the most gratifying things about being a rideshare driver is providing rides for people who do the type of work we literally couldn’t live without. How many times have you picked up an overworked doc, a bone-tired nurse, an EMT just coming off a long shift, or a late-night nursing home attendant, and thought how good it was to know you could help them out.

Today, no group of workers is more deserving of extra consideration and recognition than medical workers. During this pandemic, they haven’t had much of a chance (if any) to binge-watch a TV series or spend the afternoon cleaning out closets and drawers. They’ve been frantically busy, on the front lines of the war against the novel coronavirus and the vicious respiratory disease it causes, COVID-19. 

Day in and day out, these people have reported faithfully to work in a potentially high-risk environment. Whether they’re actually treating COVID-19 patients, or doing their regular jobs in a facility where everyone thinks nonstop about the virus and what it can do, they need understanding and support. And, from time to time they need a ride.

Knowing that medical personnel need to get their rides quickly and safely, Uber created a new class of trips for them called Uber Medics. Like Uber X, Uber XL, Uber Eats, and other classifications, Uber Medics is a type of trip Uber will allow certain drivers to accept. People have lots of questions about Uber Medics, and we’ll do our Gridwise best to address them here.

What riders are eligible for Uber Medics trips?

Medical professionals are the passengers who are eligible for Uber Medics trips. When they enter a special code, they’ll be routed into the Uber Medics request queue. They will also receive a 25% discount from Uber.

Will drivers get more money for Uber Medics trips?

No. According to Uber, drivers will be paid the same as they are for any other ride. Drivers won’t get any less, either. Any discount given to the medical professionals will be absorbed by Uber.

What if I don’t want to risk being in close quarters with medical professionals, and don’t want to accept Uber Medics trips?

First, only top-rated drivers will be eligible to accept these trips. Drivers with excellent ratings who are deemed eligible for Uber Medics will have the option of being included in the program or not being included. You can select the kinds of trips you want to accept using the trip type filter in the app.

At this time, Uber Medics is available only in select areas. These include Denver, New York City and suburbs, Upstate NY, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Chicago, New Jersey, Boston, Philadelphia, and Sacramento. Uber generally launches services in a few markets and then expands, so if and when it is available in your area, you’ll be notified and the Uber Medics option will appear in your app settings.

What if I don’t want to be too close to medical professionals, even if they aren’t using Uber Medics?

There is a chance you’ll be called to pick up a medical professional, even outside the Uber Medics program. Not all of them will have codes, and Uber Medics isn’t available in every community, so you could definitely get ordinary requests from riders who are medical professionals.

If for any reason you feel unsafe taking a passenger in your car, including concern about exposure to the coronavirus, you can always cancel the trip.  Remember, your car, your rules.

What is Uber doing to protect drivers who choose to drive for Uber Medics?

Uber is partnering with hospitals and health centers to supply drivers with masks, hand sanitizer, gloves, and disinfectant spray. Also, Uber will give extra safety training to Uber Medics drivers, emphasizing essentials such as not allowing passengers to sit in the front seat.

Uber’s actually doing another good thing: offering the use of an app to help drivers assess their health status. Through Uber’s partnership with a third-party telehealth portal called Ro, Uber drivers can list their symptoms, and if warranted, they’ll be referred to a healthcare service for further evaluation, testing, and/or treatment. A driver’s evaluation will be confidential, as with any medical examination.

New opportunities and individual choices

As with all things COVID-19, it’s important to weigh the risks to your health or the health of a high-risk loved one against the opportunities being offered. Uber Medics is a great service for a community of essential workers who deserve extra support during this crisis. You can participate if you want, but you can also opt out.

We hope this information has answered your questions about Uber Medics, but if you have some we didn’t cover, please comment below and we’ll get right on it.  And … don’t forget to download the Gridwise app to keep up with current news, and to track your activity as you work your way through the COVID-19 crisis.


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