If the cost of transportation to vaccine appointments has been an obstacle for Lehigh Valley seniors who want to receive it, it shouldn’t be any longer.
The Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority (LANTA) announced Friday that in partnership with Lehigh and Northampton counties it will provide free door-to-door service for seniors aged 65 and older to and from COVID-19 vaccination appointments.
Seniors can travel for free under the LANtaVan Shared Ride for Seniors program, a door-to-door paratransit van service that already exists. Normally, seniors have to pay a fare to ride the shuttles. However, both Lehigh and Northampton counties have agreed to pay the fares for seniors who are using Shared Ride service to get back and forth to vaccine appointments, LANTA announced in a news release.
What seniors should know:
If they are already registered for the Shared Ride service with LANTA, they simply need to call the reservation line (888-253-8333) to reserve their trip. When they do, they should let the reservation agent know they are riding to/from a vaccine appointment so LANTA can code it as free fare, the news release said. Approximately 14,000 Lehigh and Northampton County seniors are already registered and eligible for the free ride.
If a senior is not yet registered for Shared Ride service, they should call 888-253-8333 or visit lantabus.com to find out how to register. When scheduling their vaccine appointment, seniors should make an appointment at one of the physical locations where vaccine doses are being administered in Lehigh or Northampton counties (i.e. medical clinics, medical offices or pharmacies) rather than at a drive-thru location, since LANTA vans will not go through a drive-thru vaccine site.
Once they are registered for the service and have a vaccine appointment scheduled, seniors can call up to 14 days in advance of their appointment to schedule their ride.
They must call before 4:30 p.m. the day prior to their appointment.
The reservation line is 888-253-8333. It is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. seven days a week.