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The Hidden Cost of an Emergency Room Visit

Three decades ago, ambulance rides were provided free-of-charge but The New York Times reports that the same does not hold true today. Although ambulances are often called by bystanders or by 911-dispatchers, the ambulance service is always charged to the patient who is transported. “Most ambulance companies bill according to the level of skill of the team on board, rather than the medical needs of the patients they collect,” resulting in fees that can range from zero to thousands of dollars. Although some emergency transport is covered by Medicare, insurance companies differ in their methods for determining payment and often require patients to prove that the transport was “a true ’emergency.'”

Read it in The New York Times.