Twenty-four years ago, FISH (Friends In Sonoma Helping), had 27 drivers handling as many as 50 calls a month from people who had medical appointments.
Since then, the number of calls for service has quadrupled but the number of drivers has pretty much stayed steady. FISH has 35 drivers to handle more than 200 calls a month.
“We are in dire need of drivers,” said Sandra Piotter, FISH’s executive director. “We’re averaging 135 out of town rides a month. We have a lot of people going to Kaiser and the VA – and those are out of town trips.”
Many people have to leave the Valley for treatments, such as dialysis, chemotherapy, radiation treatment and pulmonary treatment.
“Our biggest out of town need is for people going to dialysis,” Piotter said. “We either go to Napa or Petaluma.”