Moving an Aging Parent from Long-Distance – Part XXIII


by Joy Loverde

Now that the move is really going to happen, I have two immediate and important decisions to make. Number one is where is the best place for Bill to live right now and Number two... how in the world will I physically get him to Chicago?

The best housing option for Bill in his current condition means my searching assisting living communities. Skilled nursing is not the level of care he needs right now. Besides, in an assisted living environment Bill might take it upon himself to exercise, eat right, and socialize and in the process regain and possibly sustain somewhat of an independent-living lifestyle. People have been known to get their act together when given the appropriate level of assistance. Too much, too soon leaves people overly dependent, and I’m banking on Bill to recover -- somewhat.

In the meantime, I’m challenged with Bill’s transportation issues. Transferring him from Florida in his present physical and mental condition will not be an easy task. He can’t physically withstand a flight in a commercial airplane and sitting in a car for the three-day trip is out of the question. This leaves me with one very expensive alternative – medical transport.

If you’re ever in this situation, look no further than the National Medical Transport Company ( When Ann Austin answered the phone, my mind was immediately put at ease. Her first questions were all about me and how I was doing. I was instantly relieved and could feel the stress leave my body (momentarily).

I have always known that medical transport is an expensive option, and I had no idea that this journey of Bill’s would cost no less than $9,000. My stomach turned when I heard the price, especially since the price of a one-way airplane ticket is $150. So I immediately had to justify this expense.  On the other hand, all I did was take one look at the sadness and stress in my Mom’s face to know that the cost of getting Bill to Chicago safe and sound and as soon as possible -- is priceless.

And so I began to make arrangements with Ann.  A 42-foot luxury motor coach, fully equipped as a hospital room on wheels, along with an RN and two drivers will pick Bill up at Signature Healthcare, drive 24 hours non-stop, and deliver him in one piece to Sunrise Assisted Living in Chicago.

We will have 24-hour telephone communication throughout the trip, and Bill will arrive like a rock star! (I hope.)