Charlottesville to propose EMS cost recovery program

Charlottesville Fire Chief Andrew Baxter and Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad President Gin Leavell will present plans to implement ambulance billing in the City to City Council at the June 19 City Council meeting.

charlottesvilleIn addition, a public hearing will be held on at the July 17 City Council meeting, at which time the public will be able to provide their input and ask questions about this proposal.

Revenue from the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) cost recovery program will provide financial stability for the current City-CARS combination volunteer-career EMS system in the City. The program is structured as an insurance-only billing program with revenue collected from Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance. City residents will not receive a bill. For non-City residents, a compassionate billing program will ensure that no outstanding balances will be referred to a collection agency.

No one will ever be denied service based on their ability to pay or any outstanding bills. ALWAYS call 911 in the event of an emergency; emergency services will ALWAYS be ready to answer your call 24/7/365.

Ambulance billing is a common approach used by many communities to partially offset the rising costs of providing emergency medical services. The proposed fee schedule mirrors the EMS cost recovery program that has been in place in Albemarle County for several years. Nearly 80% of Virginia residents live in localities that bill for ambulance transport and 37 of 38 of Virginia’s independent cities have some form of ambulance billing.

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