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Mobile Medical RV vs. Mobile Medical Van: Which Should You Choose?

Mobile Medical Clinic Van

Deciding between a mobile medical RV vs. a mobile medical van is a task that requires a lot of careful thought and consideration. If your organization is at the stage where it’s starting to consider vehicle options, some of the questions you might have are:

  • How do the costs of a mobile medical RV compare to those of a van?
  • What are ongoing expenses like for maintenance, fuel, and insurance?
  • How large are mobile medical RVs compared to mobile medical vans?
  • What customization options are available?


Our team at MoveMobility manufactures Transport Canada-certified mobile medical vans for organizations all over Canada. These mobile medical vans are used to break down healthcare barriers and save lives for people who don’t have as easy of a time accessing proper healthcare. 

While we know mobile medical vans aren’t the right solution for everyone, we want the information in this article to help you determine if they’re more suitable than RVs.

If you’ve been feeling puzzled about the direction of which vehicle to go with, then this article is for you. After you’re done reading, you’ll know about the key differences between mobile medical RVs and vans to help you make a more informed decision for your organization. 


What are mobile medical RVs?

Mobile medical RVs are like traveling clinics on wheels. They’re special vehicles made to provide healthcare services wherever they’re needed around Canada. These RVs are important for reaching communities that don’t have proper access to medical services. 


Key features of mobile medical RVs

Customization: RVs can be customized to fit different medical needs. Organizations use them for:

  • Regular check-ups
  • Eye care
  • Dental care
  • Blood donation
  • Vaccinations


Mobility: One big plus about mobile medical RVs is they can take healthcare across the country. That means city streets and rural areas where there aren’t many traditional medical clinics. While they aren’t as mobile as vans, they’re still a step ahead of fixed medical clinics.

Spacious: One notable key feature of mobile medical RVs is their space. You can find 25-foot, 30-foot, and even 40+-foot RV clinics. The level of space you need depends on the goals and budget of your organization. 

Community engagement: Mobile medical RVs do more than just give care. Your organization can use them to connect with communities, which builds trust. You can also use them to deliver important health information and push for preventive care where it’s hard to find.


When should you choose a mobile medical RV?

Deciding between a mobile medical RV and a van depends on a few things. Here’s when a mobile medical RV might be the better pick:

Need for space: If your medical team needs lots of room for its medical services, an RV offers more space than a van. It’s ideal for organizations that aim to provide healthcare services to multiple patients at a time.

Lots of equipment: If you need lots of specialized equipment like dental or imaging machines, an RV has the space required for that.

Budget: RVs cost a lot more than mobile medical vans upfront and well into the future in terms of maintenance costs. If your organization has a decent budget and you’re not financially limited, an RV could be worth it.

Long missions: A mobile medical RV may be better for healthcare missions that last a long time because of the additional space and amenities for staff and patients.


What are mobile medical vans?


Mobile Medical Clinic Van with aluminum storage cabinets. Fire extinguisher included.


Mobile medical vans are similar to mobile medical RVs in that they’re also traveling clinics on wheels. They go where they’re needed most to bring healthcare directly to people. 


Key features of mobile medical vans

Compact design: Unlike big RVs that range up to and over 40 feet, mobile medical vans are around 13 feet and designed to fit into small spaces. They’re perfect for busy city streets, tight neighborhoods, and remote communities with gravel roads.

Versatility: Even though they’re smaller than RVs, mobile medical vans can still do a lot. They offer different healthcare services, like check-ups, shots, and basic treatments. You can customize your mobile medical van with features that will help you achieve your mobile medical program’s goals. 

Cost-effectiveness: The size of mobile medical vans makes them a cost-effective solution. They’re much cheaper than RVs, which means they’re a smart choice for organizations with limited finances. Their cost-effectiveness also makes them a great choice for organizations who want to test the waters with their first clinic.

Smooth setup: Because they’re small and easy to set up, mobile medical vans can get to people fast, especially in emergencies.

Adaptability: Mobile medical vans can adapt to different situations. Your organization can use them for regular healthcare services, but you can also use them to serve patients during disasters or public health emergencies.


When should you choose a mobile medical van?

Picking a mobile medical van makes sense in several situations:

Personalized healthcare: Mobile medical vans offer a cozy setting for patients. Since they’re smaller, patients feel like they’re getting special attention instead of being lost in a bigger and less personal RV clinic. It’s like having a private chat with their healthcare provider.

Easy to maneuver: Mobile medical vans’ shorter wheelbases make them easier to navigate. They can squeeze into tight parking lots, zip through crowded streets, and navigate tricky rural roads with ease, making them perfect for reaching patients in busy cities or isolated regions.

Cost-friendly: If your organization’s budget isn’t huge, don’t worry. Mobile medical vans are much cheaper than other mobile medical RVs which can often range from $200,000 to $1 million. They’re a smart choice for organizations looking to expand healthcare access without breaking the bank.

Minimal equipment needs: If your program doesn’t need a ton of fancy equipment, a mobile medical van is a perfect choice. These vans are built for basic healthcare services, so you don’t have to worry about hauling around a bunch of equipment you don’t need.

Flexible deployment: Need to move your clinic somewhere else? No problem. Mobile medical vans are easy to relocate and adjust to fit your needs. Think of them like the Swiss Army knife of healthcare that’s ready to adapt to whatever comes your way.


What scenario would a mobile medical van make more sense?

Let’s take a look at a hypothetical scenario where a mobile medical van would make more sense than a mobile medical RV. 

Patricia is a nurse who tries her best to help people in remote locations of Iqaluit where there aren’t many hospitals or doctors nearby. She works with a dedicated healthcare team that cares a lot about everyone’s health, especially those who live in isolated regions. Currently, they don’t have a proper vehicle to provide healthcare.

One day, Patricia’s healthcare team decided to improve its efforts to bring healthcare directly to these remote regions by getting a special vehicle. They think about people like Mrs. Rodriguez, a mom who lives a long way from the nearest doctor, and Mr. Jenkins, an old man who finds it hard to travel far because he’s not feeling well.


3 reasons why a mobile medical van makes more sense

After thinking about these challenges, Patricia’s team chooses a small medical van instead of a big mobile medical RV for 3 reasons:

1. Personal connection: Patricia knows that helping people involves more than just giving them medicine – it’s about talking to them and understanding how they feel. In a cozy van, Patricia and her team can give each person the 1-on-1 personalized care they need, making them feel special.

2. Easy to reach faraway places: In places where roads are bumpy and it’s hard to get around, a small van is much easier to drive than a full-size RV. It can go to places that big vehicles can’t, like up hills or through narrow paths. This means Patricia can bring medical help to people without having to worry if the vehicle will make it to them successfully.

3. Finances: Patricia’s team also thinks about their financial situation. A small van costs less to run than a big RV, so they can help more people without spending beyond what their budget allows. This lets them make the most of the money they have and help as many people as possible.

Take a look at the video below to see what the Mobile Clinic Van looks like from MoveMobility.




Continue learning with MoveMobility

You made it to this article while trying to find information that’ll help you decide between a mobile medical RV vs. a mobile medical van.

We hope this information has helped make your decision a little easier. If you’re still feeling indecisive, browse through some of the articles below for more information on mobile medical vans. 


One of our goals at MoveMobility is to help you make the most informed purchase decision possible. We’re all about transparency and understand that there’s a lot to know when you’re deciding on the right mobile medical unit for your organization. 

If you still have any lingering questions after reading this article and the above resources, don’t hesitate to click the button below to reach out to a commercial mobility expert.



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