13 Investigates


Amputee cancer survivor battles to ride bus

Posted at 5:00 PM, Dec 14, 2017

Brianna Jones nearly lost her life in a desperate battle with a rare form of cancer, but after doctors were forced to amputate her leg, a new battle emerged.

Jones has been through a lot. In January 2014, she was diagnosed with Sarcoma, a rare cancer that affects fewer than 200,000 people each year.

Jones endured intense rounds of chemo therapy and radiation. The cancer came back three times, and doctors ultimately had to amputate her right leg.

Jones says getting to her oncologist appointments, her amputee support group meetings, and even walking her dog named "Lady," is a major challenge.

Jones began using the paratransit bus service to get to her appointments. She enjoys the door-to-door service, the safety and security the service provides.

But, Jones says she ran into problems soon after.

"I believe they made me re-certify every 3 to 6 months," said Jones.

Jones provided Contact 13 a stack of paperwork and 15 envelopes. She says it represents the battle she has been through to ride the paratransit bus.
"They just made me keep going back down there, asking me the same questions over and over, doing the same tests over and over," said Jones.

Jones claims the extensive process denied her twice.

"I just started crying, 'how can you do this?' You keep making me do this. Yes, I can sit in a wheelchair and I can propel, but after a few feet, I'm gonna get tired," said Jones.

Contact 13 has been reporting on a series of customer service issues with paratransit, specifically Transdev, the subcontracted company that operates the service for the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada.

In a one-on-one interview, the Transdev Southwest Regional Vice-President tells Contact 13, an internal audit has been launched.

"As a result of your inquiries and some issues that you brought to light, it's a good chance for us and an even better chance for us to get a look at how we can improve," said Katrina Heineking.

Just days after Contact 13 got involved with Brianna's situation, an RTC spokesperson says Jones has been granted riding privileges on the paratransit bus for the next three years.
The internal audit launched by Transdev should be complete by January 1. An action plan will be rolled out soon after.

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