Search thousands of topics on CostHelper.com

BROWSE ALL TOPICS >> appliances babies & children  cars  consumer electronics health & personal care home & garden personal finance  pets  schools small business weddings
CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Medical Specialties & Departments > Ambulance

Ambulance Cost


How Much Does an Ambulance Cost?

 
average costWith Health Insurance: $15-$100 Copayhigh costWithout Health Insurance: $0-$1,200+
post E-mail post Post   Comments (24)
  Typical costs:
  • Ambulance service typically is covered by health insurance when medically necessary. For example, BlueCross BlueShield of Alabama[1] offers coverage for medically necessary ambulance transport, to the nearest facility that can treat the patient, on many policies. For patients with health insurance, out-of-pocket costs for ambulance service typically consist of a copay of $15 to $100 or more or coinsurance of 10% to 50%. Some ambulance service providers will "balance bill" -- bill the patient for the remainder of the bill above what the insurance company pays, if they don't have a contract with that insurance company; some states have outlawed this practice. According to Woodburn Ambulance Service in Woodburn, OR, their patients with commercial insurance pay an average of $432 out of pocket.
  • For patients without health insurance, ambulance service cost typically depends on location, whether the trip is for an emergency or scheduled transport, how many miles the patient travels and whether basic life support or advanced life support is needed. The cost can be nothing out-of-pocket in cities where services are covered by taxes, but usually ranges from less than $400 to $1,200 or more plus mileage. For example, in Lima, OH, taxes pay for any ambulance services not covered by insurance, so residents do not receive a bill. The city of LeMars, IA, charges $375 for non-emergency basic life support service up to $600 for emergency service with advanced life support. The city of Urbana, OH, charges $650. The city of Nichols Hills, OK[2] , offers a membership plan for $2.50 per month for ambulance rides at no out-of-pocket cost, but non-members pay $1,100 plus $9 per mile for ambulance service. Woodburn Ambulance Service in Woodburn, OR, offers a membership plan, but non-members pay $1,220 plus $20 per mile per trip.
Related articles: Emergency Room Visit, Air Ambulance, Health Insurance

What should be included:
  • In an emergency, the ambulance provider that services the location typically will respond immediately to a call. The dispatcher will determine if only emergency medical technicians are needed, for basic life support, or if paramedics are needed, for advanced life support.
  • The ambulance crew will assess the patient's medical condition and check vital signs such as pulse, blood pressure and respiratory rate, and will determine if transport to a nearby hospital emergency room is needed. If so, the crew will provide needed care during the ambulance ride. Basic life support care, typically for non-life-threatening emergencies, includes minor treatment, continued monitoring, and possibly administration of oxygen. Advanced life support care, for life-threatening emergencies, also can include CPR, administration of medication, breathing tube insertion and other needed treatments.
Additional costs:
  • Medical supplies -- for example, sterile gloves, needles, IV supplies, catheters, and saline -- used during the trip can add hundreds or even thousands of dollars to the final bill. For example, providers in Los Angeles County[3] can charge $24.75 for an oxygen mask, as well as for bandages, dressings ice packs; they can charge $45.25 for a burn kit or obstetrical kit; and can charge $80.25 for an infusion pump or pulse oximeter.
  • If a critical care nurse or respiratory therapist is required during an ambulance ride, it can add hundreds of dollars to the cost.
Discounts:
  • Some providers will negotiate a discount of up to 20% or more for uninsured patients who pay cash or pay within a certain timeframe. For example, Lincoln County Ambulance Service[4] in Kansas offers a 20% discount for payment within 30 days and a 10% discount to uninsured patients. And Woodburn Ambulance Service in Oregon offers a 10% discount for payment made within 30 days of service.
Shopping for an ambulance:
  • The American College of Emergency Physicians Foundation[5] offers a guide to when to call an ambulance in an emergency. In a 9-1-1 emergency, the ambulance provider that services that location will respond; in some locations, there is more than one provider and it might be possible to request a certain provider.
  • For a scheduled transport, a hospital or physician should be able to provide a referral for an ambulance service. Or, the American Ambulance Association[6] offers a provider directory by state and city.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
post E-mail post Post   Comments (24)
CostHelper News


Forgotten Expenses In a Home Addition Budget
Items like construction costs, permit fees or debris removal aren't the only expenses to consider when calculating the total costs of a home remodeling project. || Posted August 5 2013


8 Ways to Stretch Your Reduced Food Budget
End of the year budgets are tight for everyone, especially in this economy.It's especially hard for the millions of Americans who depend on government programs like food stamps to help make ends meet. || Posted November 11 2013

‣ All CostHelper Blog Posts


What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
A 9-miles ride in ambulance with no medical attention cost 1200 in WA
Amount: $1,200.00
Posted by: TomN in Edmond, WA, WA.Posted: August 20th, 2014 03:08PM
Ambulance Provider: AMRDistance: 9 miles
This is legal rip-off. In my case, just a 9 miles ride from 1 hospital to the other without any medical attention cost me 1200 out of pocket. How can states attorneys and legislators let this happen everywhere. How much greed is enough ? No wonder medical bills and insurance rates keep going up dramatically everyday.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Bay Flight Air Ambulance
Amount: $43,000.00
Posted by: Shirl34205 in Bradenton, FL.Posted: June 17th, 2014 08:06PM
Ambulance Provider: Bay FlightDistance: 150 miles / 1 hr heli flight
I absolutely agree that my son could not have been taken by ambulance due to the nature of his injury but defiantly feel the cost of $43,000 is way expensive. I could have hired a private plane, private doctor and nurse for half of this cost! He was brought back by ambulance three weeks later can't wait to get that bill and compare. I can't put a price on my sons life but they can't really think people can pay that amount.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Cost of Ambulance in Dickenson County Virginia
Amount: $8,000.00
Posted by: just making it. in Clintwood, VA.Posted: May 18th, 2014 04:05PM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 14 miles
Mom fell and Dad could not get her up. Called ambulance and they took her to the hospital. No special feat. Insurance and Medicare refuse to pay any amount as of May.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
AMBULANCE RIP OFF
Amount: $2,433.00
Posted by: PRETTYPAM in COVINGTON, TN.Posted: May 15th, 2014 07:05AM
Ambulance Provider: NORTH MISSDistance: 60 MILES
I HAD A BROKEN ARM AND COULD NOT MOVE. I WAS PUT INTO THE AMBULANCE AND WAS TOLD COVINGTON, TN DID NOT HAVE AN ORTHO ON STAFF AND I WOULD HAVE TO GO METHODIST NORTH WHICH WAS CLOSER TO ME. IT WAS TOO CROWDED THERE SO I THEN WAS GOING TO BAPTIS EAST IN MEMPHIS, TN. I THINK THE AMBULANCE COMPANIES ARE ABLE TO DO THIS BECAUSE THERE IS NOTHING REGULATING THEM ON WHAT THE TOP AMOUNT SHOULD BE. WE MUST PAY FOR THE PEOPLE THAT CAN NOT PAY.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
NON EMERG. HOSPITAL TO HOSPITAL
Amount: $6,100.00
Posted by: Speechless in Rockford. in Rockford, IL.Posted: May 8th, 2014 10:05AM
Ambulance Provider: SUPERIOR AIR GROUND AMB SERV.Distance: 15
Speechless, I read comments about costs of $1,500 to $2,000 range and customers complaining. So what about this $5,500.00 for the ambulance $750.00 for 15 miles @$50 a mile. I thought it had to be a typo.The billing shows that blue cross/blue shield paid $5,000.00 and my part would be $1,250 I called and negotiated a $250.00 discount.Whats going on? This was a none emergency ride.superior air ground amb. service.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Absolutely Ridiculous Ambulance Cost
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: melby in Harrisonville, MO.Posted: May 5th, 2014 06:05AM
Ambulance Provider: City of Harrisonville, MODistance: 17.3 miles
Statement: Outside Harrisonville-$790(did not need to go outside Harrisonville) 17.3 x $10.55=$182.52(to go outside Harrisonville). Isn't it enough to charge for outside Harrisonville, do they have to charge for miles too? This city has been ripping me off since I came here back in 2010. I was going to get up after bicycle accident and walk home but the people that stopped said they called an ambulance to take care of me. Did not need to go by ambulance, I was fine. Did not need to be in hospital either. Maybe the people who called the ambulance should pay my bills.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Scammed by emt
Amount: $1,136.00
Posted by: Lukystarz in Mesquite, TX.Posted: February 5th, 2014 11:02AM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 15 miles
My 3 week old baby was running a fever so we took her to the ER. After waiting in a room for 5 hours and finding no results from the blood work they decided it was an emergency and that they needed to tranport her by ambulance to childrens hospital. When I asked if I could drive her myself I was told by the hospital staff that my insurance would cover the ambulance ride but if I refused the ambulance ride my ins co would refuse to pay any related medical bills due to the fact that I refused dr orders. Just received a bill for 1136 that insurance will not pay any on because it is an out of network provider after calling the ins co they informed me that they cannot legally refuse a claim and that they would have covered the medical expenses if i had driven her myself. So now i am looking at 7 k in med bills from her delivery and 5k in medical bills from the virus she had and that is after my insurance pays their portion of everything!
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Ambulance out of state
Amount: $1,850.00
Posted by: KJG in Evansville, IN.Posted: January 22nd, 2014 08:01AM
Ambulance Provider: AMR of IndianaDistance: 4 mi
husband out of town;brought to hospital-kidney stone. Sent bill to his Father's address even though no association to him. Claimed looked up on internet and found his name. Both live in MD. Overcharge and wouldn't return calls.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Rip off
Amount: $1,098.00
Posted by: Adam baker in Marion, AL.Posted: October 19th, 2013 12:10PM
Ambulance Provider: Care ambulanceDistance: 23 miles
Was put in ambulance with nothing but a ride. Took me to Selma alabama. Charged me $770.00 for ride and $328 for mileage. They took me 23 miles in an old ford van ambulance. Said my insurance paid $351 and sent me a bill for $747. A limo would have been $100 and a could have flown to l.a for only $400. P.s that's 2500 miles from me. What a rip off!! This is why people stay broke.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Rip off
Amount: $1,098.00
Posted by: Adam baker in Marion, AL.Posted: October 19th, 2013 12:10PM
Ambulance Provider: Care ambulanceDistance: 23 miles
Was put in ambulance with nothing but a ride. Took me to Selma alabama. Charged me $770.00 for ride and $328 for mileage. They took me 23 miles in an old ford van ambulance. Said my insurance paid $351 and sent me a bill for $747. A limo would have been $100 and a could have flown to l.a for only $400. P.s that's 2500 miles from me. What a rip off!! This is why people stay broke.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
$2,010 to go less than a mile with no treatment...in a fire truck!
Amount: $2,010.00
Posted by: a user in Cambridge, MA.Posted: July 9th, 2013 08:07AM
Ambulance Provider: Pro EMSDistance: 0.8 miles
This was from a 911 call and being picked up by a fire truck and firemen and taken less than 0.5 miles away, which literally took 2 minutes driving and probably 15 minutes total from fire station garage and back. Even though the firemen and fire truck are paid for out of our tax dollars, somehow some private company is allowed to charge whatever they want on top of that.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Way too expensive for nothing
Amount: $746.68
Posted by: Yadada in Seattle, WA.Posted: July 2nd, 2013 09:07AM
Ambulance Provider: American Medical ResponseDistance: Across the street from my home
My friends called the cops because of suicidal ideations. When the cops came, I just wanted them to take the gun away. They had called the ambulance and when I replied that I wasn't going and that I was uninsured, they told me it would be free. They handcuffed me and forced me onto the gurney to be taken across the street from my home. I wasn't even able to get admitted into the ER because they then decided to take me to the psych ward of the jail. I was finally released with no charges - yet I have this bill that I can't afford to pay. I'm uninsured and am struggling to pay rent. Talk about getting screwed over twice.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Excessive Ambulance Bill
Amount: $883.95
Posted by: can say because ambulance co to close in Dexter, MO.Posted: June 4th, 2013 08:06AM
Ambulance Provider: Stoddard County AmbulanceDistance: 30 miles
Stuck an IV in my arm for the 30 mile trip so that I would not starve - advise them that I probably would not starve to death in 30 miles. Thier reply was that it was standard procedure (cost of IV $150.00) Provided no other care but the ride.Could have hired a limo for $200.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Cost of Service in Cary, NC
Amount: $719.28
Posted by: Dave Fisher in Morrisville, NC.Posted: April 15th, 2013 10:04AM
Ambulance Provider: Wake County EMSDistance: 12
Well I too see it as excessive, but seems to be lower then others had paid in areas outside of NC

ALS Emerg Transportation - Wake Cty 591.60
Mileage Wake Cty 12 Miles 127.68
Total 719.28
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Outrageous Ambulance bill
Amount: $2,642.00
Posted by: Mari F in Modesto, CA.Posted: April 4th, 2013 05:04PM
Ambulance Provider: American Medical ResponseDistance: 3 miles
I called AMR because I was vomiting excessively and had gone into atrial fibrillation. There was no one to drive me to the hospital and I did not feel safe to drive. The paramedic was rude and disrespectful to me during his assessment and transport. It wasn't until I notified him that I was a RN and I was going to report him did he stop. He never applied oxygen or started an IV, but in the end the billing was outrageous. I did notify AMR headquarters of their paramedic's behavior, but it did not lessen the cost. I then had to fight with my insurance co. to pay their portion. One of the worst experiences in my life.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Air Ambulance cost more than hospital
Amount: $19.72
Posted by: ksherm in Coos Bay, OR.Posted: February 26th, 2013 03:02PM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 120 miles
I was diagnosed with renal failure at the emergency room and put on a plane to another city. The 3-day hospital stay came to $13,000. The air ambulance wants $19,720. I have no health insurance.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Ridiculous Rip-Off
Amount: $1,212.26
Posted by: Lighter Pocket Tim in Kenmore, WA.Posted: February 25th, 2013 04:02PM
Ambulance Provider: American Medical ResponseDistance: 6 miles
My wife called 911 after she found me in need of going to the hospital, though she could have drove me. The police showed up as did the ambulance. I wasn't too coherent and just went along with whatever. They checked my vitals and drove me to the ER. Over $1200 later I find that my insurance only pays $500. Rip off for the services charged.rnWorst of all is that if the Fire Dept had sent a Medic One instead of an Ambulance being dispatched by 911, the trip would have been FREE. Same services. My wife is never to call for an "ambulance" again. (She should have driven me in the 1st place!)
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Refused care--no ride
Amount: $1,700.00
Posted by: Jan Becker in Mineral, CA.Posted: December 27th, 2012 11:12AM
Ambulance Provider: Chester Fire ProtectionDistance: 0
Was a passenger with a co-worker when the car hit black ice and went over a cliff landing upside down next to a creek. After pulling myself up the hill with a rope, I was strong-armed into the ambulance by an EMT--where I was quizzed by the CHP while the EMT took my blood pressure, checked my lungs, and irrigated my glass-filled hand, even though I had refused care by signing a form. I thought I had to get into the ambulance because law enforcement was investigating the accident and wanted to interview me there.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Ambulance ride cost
Amount: $845.07
Posted by: Raju in Minniapolis, MN.Posted: November 28th, 2012 11:11AM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 15
Bill was 1403.90 Insurance(BCBSM) allowed 558.83 toward deductible 2500. we had to pay 845.07
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Non emergency transport
Amount: $815.03
Posted by: 123-heathsystemsucks in Mobile, AL.Posted: October 24th, 2012 06:10PM
Ambulance Provider: LifeguardDistance: 4 miles
My daughter suffered a hairline skull fracture from a direct hit by a line drive baseball at local professional team. She was alert but was transferred to local children's hospital for observation. They MADE us use an ambulance service. They put me on the stretcher while I held her. They travelled 4 miles obeying all traffic laws, no sirens, and did not even touch her. They billed us $816 for 20 minutes. Insurance allowed $300 toward $1000 deductible. We had to pay the full $816. $61 for disposables. Disposable what??? Insurance won't pay more because they are out of network company. I asked which ambulance companies are in network? They said " There are no in network ambulance services in the state of Alabama". This is highway robbery!!
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Rip off
Amount: $1,730.00
Posted by: senior in Addison, IL.Posted: October 6th, 2012 11:10AM
Ambulance Provider: Addison Fire ProtectionDistance: 3 miles
Was dizzy weak and called for help in case I was having another Heart Attack..Was taken to ER at Glen Oaks Hospital..I thought they give Seniors a discount but guess not..
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Cost to go 3 miles with alert passenger
Amount: $1,699.60
Posted by: schorsch in Addison, IL.Posted: July 30th, 2012 12:07PM
Ambulance Provider: Addison Fire ProtectionDistance: 3.1 miles
My husband got dizzy and passed out hitting his head. He regained consciousness but his friends he was with called an ambulance to take him to an emergency room. They called 911 and the city ambulance arrived and took him already sitting up and mobile in for a three mile ride. Insurance paid $865 but the city would not budge on the other $836 due. They said they could charge what they wanted,
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
cost of ambulance to doctor's office
Amount: $2,143.00
Posted by: a user in san diego, CA.Posted: April 28th, 2012 05:04PM
Ambulance Provider: AmeriCareDistance: 16 miles
I was in skilled nursing facility after hip replacement. Before discharge, i was told Medicare
required a visit to my doctor 16 miles away.
The SNF set up the ambulance ride and told me the
cost was covered by Medicare. (They knew i only had
Part)
I said my son could drive me; he was at the place.
No, i should take the ambulance....
I did not require any attention, two ambulance fellows did have me get on a gurney.
What a racket. Whoever pays is being way overcharged.
In this case it's me,and i've delayed because i am
so disgusted.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Ambulance ride cost way too much!!!
Amount: $2,850.00
Posted by: kellyclan1 in Brownstown, MI.Posted: August 10th, 2011 10:08AM
Ambulance Provider: Superior AmbulanceDistance: 10 miles
In June 2011, I took my husband to the emergency room with a swollen lower leg, the on call doctor said he thought that it was DVT (deep vein thrombosis)because of the x-rays. They said they could not treat him there and wanted to send him to their other facility 10 miles away...they would NOT let me drive him there and THEY called for transport, but I get the bill ($2850.00). My health insurance paid $1449.00, but I still received a bill for $1401.00. My husband is unemployed, so he is on my insurance (which already costs too much), Please help! What can we do to get the bill lowered?
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam


 

Comment On Your Experience With an Ambulance
 
Subject:  *
Amount Spent:  *
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 
Comments: 
Purchased:  Year: 
City:  * State:  *
 
Information about you:
Email:  * Email addresses are not displayed.
Name:  This is the name we'll display with your post.
me on this computer
*=required field.
 



External Resources:
  1.  /www.bcbsal.org/providers/helpful/Ambulance%20Coverage%20Policy.cfm
  2.  www.nicholshills.net/SectionIndex.asp?SectionID=85
  3.  fire.ci.glendale.ca.us/pdf/AmbulanceRates070110.pdf
  4.  www.lincolncoks.com/Ambulance/GeneralInformation/PatientBilling/FinancialAssistanceProg...
  5.  www.EmergencyCareforYou.org/EmergencyManual/IsItAnEmergency/Default.aspx?id=130
  6.  www.the-aaa.org/DIRECTORY/memberlocator.asp
More Health & Personal Care Topics
Check Out All Costs for Health & Personal Care How Much Does an Emergency Room Visit Cost? How Much Does an X-Ray Cost? How Much Do Body Piercings Cost?

Search Thousands of Topics on CostHelper.com



Today's Featured Cost Articles

About CostHelper
CostHelper is based in Silicon Valley and provides consumers with unbiased price information about thousands of goods and services. Our writers are experienced journalists who adhere to our strict editorial ethics policy.

CostHelper Community
X-RAY HIP UNI 2+ VW
Paid: 493.00
New patient office visit $93Took 2 xrays of my hip $493Insurance company noted Charge Exceeds Defined Pay amount on the Xray. Ins Co. noted Charge Exceeds the contractual allowance per the contract. Ins. Co... [more]
-Living is costing me to Death
X-Ray Cost
Front struts for 06 Acura MDX
Paid: 325.00
Dealer quoted $1500 for all 4 struts/shocks ($750 Front; $650 Rear). Shopped it around and found they were way over priced! Used Monroe OESpectrum on fronts (excellent) and rear didn't need to replaced..... [more]
-Foolmeonce
Car Shock Absorbers Cost
Trane 3Ton 13SEER XR13
Paid: 4217.00
Upgraded my 10yr old Goodman A/C unit for a Trane. AS Heating & Cooling were great to work with and had the better pricing and financing between the 3 certified Trane installers for the area. Great team and quick to work... [more]
-Chris87
Central Air Conditioner Cost
Annual cost Houston TX
Paid: 169.00
Our home is 3100 sf. We had termites 15 years ago they were treated and are now on annual inspection plan with same company for over 15 years. The inspection is limited to a visual walk around only... [more]
-Richard Markel
Termite Control Cost
what deck's cost
Paid: 1600.00
I can build an 8 by 8 deck with two sets of stairs for 25 a square foot usually you just need to go see how much a box of screws cost and 1 2x12x16 then tell me I'm to high and remember you don't pay cheap for a good doctor lawyer hair sty... [more]
-Tim the trim carpenter
Deck Cost
TIMING BELT
Paid: 395.62
Replaced Timing belt, Alternator belt, Power Steering belt, Crank Shaft Seal and Cam Shaft Seal... [more]
-REYNOSO
Replacing a Timing Belt Cost