Kansas City, Missouri-based Madison Jahn today works in the aviation insurance division of the company that also operates the National Association of Independent Truckers group — a membership group offering a variety of owner-operator business- and insurance-related services principally for leased independent contractors.
Jahn, however, knows well what’s available to NAIT member owner-operators. As an employee of the company, she’s got access to much the same when it comes to medical-related services. Among other benefits, NAIT members enjoy a telehealth service whose consults come at no charge outside the cost of association membership, yet the association itself has received scant feedback from member operators about how it’s working — or not — from them. As I wrote last month, too, it seems very few have even used it and may not be aware of its existence almost a year into availability, announced earlier this year just as the COVID-19 pandemic was becoming apparent to public health officials and the rest of the world. Another group, the National Association of Small Trucking Companies, offers a similar service to its small-fleet members, at a cost of $12.50/month/driver.
Jahn has used NAIT’s telehealth option more than once, and the experience “was super-positive” each time. The first — “I couldn’t get into my doctor’s office when COVID started,” she said, and needed a particular prescription refill. “I selected the option to have the doctor call you back.”
In the NAIT’s benefits app the “24/7 Doctor” option, when selected, gives users a time estimate for a callback that, in this case, was about an hour.
Yet “I got a call within about five minutes,” Jahn said, “both times,” the second a consult for what she suspected was an ear infection. Prescriptions in each case were ready at her local pharmacy in under an hour.
Again, there is no cost for use of this service to NAIT members, most of whom come to the group through a fleet where they’re leased. If you’re a member, too, your entire family can use the service as well, as NAIT head Jason Sheets told me attendant to prior reporting. It’s accessible through the “SHOWBenefits” app, as it’s listed in Google Play and App Store marketplaces for iPhone and Android devices. After downloading, entre your NAIT member ID number and date of birth. Sheets said it can take up to 24 hours after downloading the app before the 24/7 Doctor function activates, but you will see it once you log in.
If you don’t feel you need to actually visit a doctor’s office physically, it’s worth using, says Jahn. In her case, “it’s definitely worth the price” of admission, or lack thereof in this case. “It saved me two $50 copays” by eliminating two office visits.
One of our own throws hat into the ring in contest for custom bike
And if he wins, said Overdrive Extra contributing writer Clifford Petersen, he’ll donate the sale of, or hold a raffle/auction for, the motorcycle to benefit the well-known St. Christopher Truckers Relief Fund, which helps truckers and their families defray costs associated with medical emergencies, among other philanthropic efforts. The contest is called “Dream Chopper” and put on by the custom motorcycle builders behind Orange County Choppers (some of you will remember them from the “American Chopper” TV series). It’s basically asked people from around the country to enter with a narrative of just why they should be the winner, for whom the Orange County crew will then build the “Dream Chopper”
Petersen, in his story, told of his own dream bike of a fashion — the one he rides now when off the long trucking road, a 2018 Harley-Davidson Heritage Classic. He hauls “as a professional trucker all over the U.S.,” he wrote, “but when I am home I can leave all the stress of limited parking, rude drivers, endless delays for loading or deliveries behind by the turn of the throttle.”
If he were to win the contest and be selected for the Dream Chopper build, “I would dedicate the build and the bike for a charity raffle or auction to [benefit] the St. Christopher’s Trucker Relief Fund,” Petersen added, an organization as we know “that helps professional drivers out of work due to health reasons.”
Good luck, Clifford.