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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+
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  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.
  • 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.
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments

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North Memorial Service
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Still Standing in Lino Lakes, MN.Posted: November 24th, 2019 02:11PM
Ambulance Provider: North MemorialDistance:
North Memorial's EMS almost cost me my life.
During a heart attack he rejected transport because he was unsure and not listening to the clinic medical staff.My wife reacted quickly to drive to adjoining county supported by Allina Ambulance who acted quickly and professionally. I'm alive today despite North Memorial's EMS Brian.
Now that's " PRICELESS"
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Fairly priced
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Thank you NHS in Ramsey, Other.Posted: November 8th, 2019 10:11AM
Ambulance Provider: NHSDistance: 3 miles
My baby boy choked on some food this evening. While we were on the phone to the emergency services the blockage cleared. Ambulance was sent anyway to make sure everything was ok. Paramedics checked him over and observed him for a little while just in case. Gave advice, let my older son have a look in the ambulance then left. Didn't cost me a penny, as it should be.
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Amount: $2,250.00
Posted by: Shirl in Plymouth Meeting, PA.Posted: February 12th, 2019 01:02PM
Ambulance Provider: Plymouth Ambulance Assoc.Distance: 5.3 miles
I fell and shattered my knee cap. I could not stand to walk I couldn’t straighten my leg. I was in a lot of pain. The total cost to drive me to the nearest hospital was $2,250.00.
My insurance paid the reasonable and in network amount which was $702.00.
The ambulance rejected that amount for full payment because they said they are out of network. I was billed for the remaining balance of 1,632.68.
No detailed itemized bill just the balance.
They started an I.V. and asked if I wanted something for pain and of course I did since on a scale of 1-10 my pain was a 200. So how can a 5.3 mile ride to the nearest hospital cost over $2,250.00 dollars.
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Balance Billing for Contractual Insurance Discounts
Amount: $1,035.00
Posted by: Robert Allen Jenkins in Wake Forest, NC.Posted: November 23rd, 2018 08:11PM
Ambulance Provider: Granville NC EMSDistance: 12
This outfit is not content with the amount paid them by the insurance company. They want to be paid for an discount applied by the insurer. They're what's known as "balance billers". Balance billing is a disreputable practice that undermines the whole insurance system.
Per my insurer, I am not to pay them any more than my co-insurance amount. My insurer stated, "This physician or health care provider is out-of-network. Based on an agreement with integrated health plan (using cms / ncci edit rules), the provider has accepted a discount for this service. The discount shown is your savings and is not included in the amount you owe. If you have paid the physician or health care provider more than the amount you owe, please call them for a refund."
I've made it clear to them and their collection agency, that I will not pay their balance bill. I have also reported them to the NC Dept of Insurance.
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chest pain difficulty breathing
Amount: $18,000.00
Posted by: kitty's papa in smethport, PA.Posted: October 12th, 2018 01:10PM
Ambulance Provider: priority careDistance: 20 miles
was transported 15 minutes to ogh for chest pain and difficulty breathing.
they had issues inserting iv needle (no saline) and succeed on the 4th try.
sent charge to old insurance company in excess of 18,000.00 (thats about 900 dollars a mile)
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Car accident
Amount: $1,800.00
Posted by: Kerri OConnell in LINCOLN, NE.Posted: July 30th, 2018 07:07AM
Ambulance Provider: LCFDDistance: 4 miles, roughly
So,I was struck by a young girl who bounced me between 2 cars. Never received a bill for ambulance ride. It was sent to a address I'm Massachusetts, I live in Nebraska! 2 years later I received a summons that
I'm being sued by said co. Um, say what??????
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EMS Ambulance Ride
Amount: $648.00
Posted by: Myra Kay Hammon in Mobile, AL.Posted: April 17th, 2018 12:04PM
Ambulance Provider: Fire DepartmentDistance: 3.4 miles
I live in the city and pay taxes. I was transported a very short distance. It took 3 months for the bill to be sent. I was charged $22 of my major medical, 80% of the eligible charge, and the overage Blue Cross Blue Shield would not cover. The mileage was billed at $12.00 a mile, rounded to 4 miles.
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IU Hospital Bloomington
Amount: $3,500.00
Posted by: CrazyCost in Bloomington, IN.Posted: March 27th, 2018 10:03AM
Ambulance Provider: IU HealthDistance: 2 miles
Absolutely crazy amount of money. My daughter went 2 miles to the IU Hospital in Bloomington, IN with the flu. The Ambulance charge was $3,500.00
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Rip off at Fremont, CA
Amount: $2,245.93
Posted by: desi999 in Fremont, CA.Posted: March 17th, 2018 11:03PM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 2 miles
2 mile ride after a minor accident at school
Wife is in medical field and she said no need for ambulance as it is a minor wound but somehow convinced her and took my kid in the ambulance to the hospital
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Amount: $345.00
Posted by: Oliviyayo in Toronto, Other.Posted: December 16th, 2017 10:12PM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 10 km
This is the price in Canada no matter what the distance.
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Unheard of fees for a ride.
Amount: $2,400.00
Posted by: Jerry, B. in Rocklin, CA.Posted: December 1st, 2017 03:12PM
Ambulance Provider: American AmbulanceDistance: 5
Did nothing, but take my pulse, and drive me to the Hospital.
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Cost of Ambulance in San Diego
Amount: $2,041.61
Posted by: Uday Shah in San Diego, CA.Posted: September 20th, 2017 10:09AM
Ambulance Provider: Envision HealthcareDistance: 1/4 mile
High ambulance charge for really short trip. No treatment given in the Ambulance...!
Someone need to stop this daytime robbery.
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City of Long Beach, California Non-Medi-CAL Transport (=Taxpayer)
Amount: $2,066.00
Posted by: [email protected] in Long Beach, CA.Posted: June 5th, 2017 06:06PM
Ambulance Provider: City of Long BeachDistance: 1 mile
There is no charge for Medi-Cal users. Taxpaying citizens are charged thousands.
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helicopter ambulance
Amount: $27,000.00
Posted by: a user in turners corner, ga, GA.Posted: May 9th, 2017 04:05AM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 27000 rotor miles
I was in a motorcycle wreck and had rib fractures and skin off my leg down to the bone , but never lost consciousness and told them I wanted to go to the hospital that was 20 miles down the road as I had doctors there I knew . they knocked me out with meds against my will and I woke up in a hospital in downtown Atlanta, and they were horrible and did nothing for me and sent me home .
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Outrageous Superior Bill, I Feel Violated
Amount: $6,720.00
Posted by: Next Time I'm Using Uber in West Bloomfield/Detroit, MI.Posted: April 19th, 2017 05:04PM
Ambulance Provider: Superior Ambulance of MIDistance: 23 miles. Hospital transfer
Transfer from Henry Ford West Bloomfield to Henry Ford Detroit. No lights/Siren. Insurance paid $795.20, remaining balance of $5,924.80. CPT code A0434: SCT Base Rate 2-Emergency = charged $5,500.00 I have copies of other billing statements from Superior with the same CPT code billed at $960.00. I honestly feel violated by this charge and attempt to steal my hard earned money. I drove myself to the hospital and had no input on being transferred or the method of transportation.
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You thank we are complaining too much
Amount: $38,067.00
Posted by: Dayne Hawkins in Round Rock to Temple, TX.Posted: March 3rd, 2017 04:03PM
Ambulance Provider: PHIDistance: About 28 miles
My wife had a brain aneurysm on 3/25/16 the Dr from Scott&White (who is also our insurance company) called a air ambulance to take her to the S&W in Temple because I was told time was most important. But what they didn't bother to find out is that she was going to have to wait 8 hours at the hospital in Temple before she could be operated on. No PHI is billing me $33,390 for a 28 mile trip. I do think that is a little much!
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Cost should be capped
Amount: $4,550.00
Posted by: dkoz in Crown Point, IN.Posted: February 13th, 2017 10:02AM
Ambulance Provider: Superior AmbulanceDistance: less than a mile
In August of 2014, my husband need to be transported to the helicopter pad at the hospital and we received a bill for $4,550 and when we questioned why so much no one could provide a valid answer. The helicopter pad is less than .25 miles from the ER. The company gave us 3 different answers on why it was so expensive. My husband was alert and he stated they just put him on a cot and transferred him, he was stable.
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Amount: $1,275.00
Posted by: ShouldaStayedHome in West Hollywood, CA.Posted: January 28th, 2017 10:01PM
Ambulance Provider: Westmd dba McCormick AmbulanceDistance: .6 miles
Drank too much on New Years Eve. Taken to hospital half a mile away- unconscious so I had no opportunity to give consent. I was grateful in the beginning and willing to pay, but $1275 is too much for a short ride. I was given no treatment in ambulance or in hospital. I received no info about or from the ambulance until a month later. And they only want to give me one month to pay. They could at least break down the cost on the bill or give information on payment options. This just comes off cold and unreasonable.
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american ambulance response
Amount: $1,547.13
Posted by: Suzann in Vernon ,CT in vernon, CT.Posted: January 3rd, 2017 10:01PM
Ambulance Provider: ambulance serv of manchester, ctDistance: 2 miles and 15 miles
my insurance paid 1,392.42 then next transferred to Hartford, ct , we paid $100.00 plus more insurance paid 514.54. total 614.54. we learned that collection agency told us we must pay 827.00 November 10, 2016. We called them but they were verbal abusive and refused to accept proof of our insurance claims. Reason that we are hearing impairment. we refused to pay but we paid full 114.00on April 11, 2015. they did not tell us reason detail why.
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Cost of ambulance ride
Amount: $12,650.00
Posted by: David D. in Hermiston, OR.Posted: December 30th, 2016 03:12PM
Ambulance Provider: Hermiston AmbulanceDistance: 3.2 miles
I got out of my car to check on a tire, I thought was going flat from the noise I heard, was a large chunk of ice thumping against the tire and fenderwell, I knocked it loose from the fenderwell with my hammer from the trunk, and as I walked back around the car to place the hammer back in the trunk I caught the toe of my boot in a hole in the ice, and fell my body twisting to the right, and breaking both right lower leg bones in the process, the tibia in three places, and the fibula in one place. Excruciating pain, I could barely move, I tried to move back from the roadway I was lying in out beyond the car, but could only hunch up against the bumper the best I was able. I then called 911, and was taken to the hospital ER after about 10 minutes. The medic crew were awesome, the best I could have asked for, but then as I don't have insurance, haven't been at my job long enough, and my last insurance had dropped me, (Oregon Health plan), I received a bill for over $12,000.
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Eliminate High Costs Ground or Air ambulance Services Locacally and Worldwide.
Amount: $290.00
Posted by: UBEHL in Hammond, IN.Posted: December 8th, 2016 08:12AM
Ambulance Provider: UBEHLDistance: 1,000 miles
I often travel in the Caribbean and usually I purchased travel insurance to cover each trip. I came to realize that in the event of a medical emergency I must first pay the bill then apply for reimbursement. Most countries don't accept checks and credit cards may not be accessible. Hence, the likelihood of being stranded in a foreign land was enormous. Someone recommended UBEHL that offers an ambulance membership subscription, for ground or air ambulance services, which covers my family and me 24/7 and 365 days a year locally and worldwide. Zero deductibles, no co-pays, no Out-of-Pocket costs. The protection only costs $1 per day. At 57 years old, I have never used the services of an ambulance, but I am self-employed and cannot afford to have unexpected catastrophic expenses. Therefore, I am subscribed to this peace of mind that I carry with me everywhere I go.
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Over-priced 911 Transportation
Amount: $4,917.00
Posted by: 24liza in Republic, Wa., WA.Posted: November 2nd, 2016 07:11AM
Ambulance Provider: Ferry County Public Hospital DistrictDistance: 6 miles
My husband was having trouble breathing because of a bad cold/virus. He called 911 and was transported to the Ferry County Memorial Hospital,Republic, Wa. The EMT checked his vitals and transported him to the hospital.That's it. Hospital ran some tests, gave him an IV for dehydration -glucose/Sodium, and some horse-sized pills (that he could not swallow!) He was then released. He called Police to see if he could get a ride home, but they said no, they were too busy. There is NO taxi He walked 1/2 mile into town and a kind woman at the local grocery store drove him home. Bill is $4,917.00 with a "payment and adjustment " of $986.50
Emergency Medical Response- $4,749
Insurance payment $914.27
Republic Medical Center $168.00 (NO insurance payment)
Adjustment of $72.23
CURRENT patient Responsibility - $3,930.50
UNINSURED patients get 15% off bill if paid in full within 30 days. INSURED patients only get 5% reduction.
We pay $326 a yr in taxes for EMS and Hospital District.
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Excessive charges for ambulance service
Amount: $1,400.00
Posted by: JIMR in Roswell, GA.Posted: October 15th, 2016 11:10AM
Ambulance Provider: Metro RuralDistance: 8 miles
Humana paid $0 due to out-of-network.
Prices almost double from those established in adjoining counties of metro Atlanta.
Rural Metro gave oxygen without asking nor medically necessary. Same true with placing a saline solution port. Oxygen and port installed within only a few blocks of hospital.
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Air ambulance
Amount: $59,999.00
Posted by: Steve Childress in Carlsbad, NM.Posted: September 18th, 2016 11:09PM
Ambulance Provider: Rocky Mountain HoldingsDistance: 152.00 miles
I had a heart attack in Carlsbad, NM. My cardiologist in Lubbock, TX knew it was a stent malfunction from earlier in the year. He ordered me flown to Lubbock, 152 miles as the crow flies. Get a bill for $60,000 dollars. $394.00 dollars a mile. I was in the air Force. I know that is a ridiculous amount to pay. I was asked maybe 3 times during the flight, how ya doing. The rest of the time, the crew was on laptops and smart phones texting. Told them I had spinal injuries and need a pillow. An hour of the most excruciating back pain, never mind the chest compressions from heart attack. We are a 1 horse town and you're screwed if you need service and don't have insurance. $400.00 a mile for a helicopter? Give me a break! The 2 EST's could have lost 250 lbs. between them and not missed it. Maybe the fuel consumption was high!
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Ambulance ride
Amount: $4,500.00
Posted by: Deb L. in Basin, WY.Posted: August 13th, 2016 09:08PM
Ambulance Provider: White Lines dba Atwood AmbulanceDistance: 66 miles
Was taken by ambulance to hospital 3 miles from home. That hospital called ambulance to transport me to another hospital within 30 minutes of arriving. Ambulance service charged for 2 callouts. They are not in the preferred provider network for my BCBS. I will have to pay the whole amount out of pocket.
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The real cost associated
Amount: $-1,400.00
Posted by: Do you want frys with that in Madison, WI.Posted: August 13th, 2016 05:08AM
For most, has this is rediculous pricing. Most met/meds make less than a McDonalds employee. You tip the pizza guy to bring it to your door, but carry 300 pound grandma down three flights of stairs, "that's your job". Do you realize, at least at our service, it takes $280.00 just to pull out of the station. Our insurance, per rig, is more per day than most people pay for one month. There are only three ambulance insurance companies in the USA. Then, when it's all done and said, medi-care refuses the trip. I can refuse to serve you in a restaraunt, but due to cobra, I can't refuse you the service. Now, add the fact of the frequent flier, 911 abusers we are lucky to be recovering .38 cents on the dollar. Top this off with the cost of the support staff, who answered the phone, who dispatched them, who maintained that rig? Starting to get the picture?
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Fair price
Amount: $34.04
Posted by: anon69 in Austin, TX.Posted: August 11th, 2016 09:08AM
Ambulance Provider: Austin Travis EMSDistance: 6.7
Total was 957.41. Cigna paid a good chunk of it. To keep it short. I dont do drugs, smoke or drink. Decide to take etizolam . Long story short I had a Grand Mal seizure and then stopped breathing as a result of withdraws. Happend in the middle of my parents taking me out to eat in the car. When I awoke the EMT lady said they had stuck oxygen tubes in my lungs through my nose and had me hooked up to saline and electrolytes, and a vitals monitor. I guess it was well worth the price considering I could of needed up retarded had I had brain damage. Considering the van cost hundrerds of thousands if not millions, the poor hard working trained emt have to get paid, all the equipment on the van, the people radioing the emt's in the van at the hospital. I say its well worth 1000.000 dollars.
I personal dont believe I deserved an ambulance considering theres people out there with real illnesses. But I didn't make the call. Oh yea I wet my self too so add in cleaning services.
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Amount: $1,867.80
Posted by: Kimberly L Teeple in Edina, MN.Posted: July 19th, 2016 01:07PM
Ambulance Provider: Hennepin County Medical CenterDistance: 6 miles
This was with an iv to hydrate and that is all. No other services provided.
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Amublance fee denied by BlueCross BlueShield
Amount: $1,638.31
Posted by: ES really? in Marshall, MN.Posted: May 28th, 2016 07:05PM
Ambulance Provider: North Memorial Ambulance ServiceDistance: 3 miles
I found my son who was taking a shower laying in the wet tub/shower unconscious. I called for an ambulance as there was no way I could get him out myself. When the ambulance arrived he awoke. He was vomiting. He was lifted out and transported to the hospital. Now BlueCross BlueShied tells me the bill is all mine.
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doctor called ambulance that is not necessary
Amount: $1,710.00
Posted by: Houston Ben in Houston, TX.Posted: May 2nd, 2016 10:05AM
Ambulance Provider: Bayou City EMSDistance: 0.5mile
I was in emergency room of St Luke's hospital, after check and exam, doctor decide to admit me into hospital. The main building is half a mile away from the emergency room, I fully capable of walk myself or my wife can give me drive, just around the corner. but they insist that I ride on an ambulance they called in, an old, cranky van for half mile ride... after that I got the bill of 1710!! I have insurance from BB, they they paid 1088, which I think is reasonable, but I still have to pay 622! The most expensive 1 minute ride in my life! I called to dispute the bill, they basically said that is the bill, that is what you have pay, period!!!
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Cost of Ambulance, Alpharetta, GA
Amount: $1,331.04
Posted by: a user in Alpharetta, GA.Posted: April 28th, 2016 05:04AM
Ambulance Provider: Distance: 5 miles
Where is the choice? Some one should regulate this, or give you options as you call 911. "There is one company for 500, one for 1300..."
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Arbitrary Ambulance Fees
Amount: $2,318.71
Posted by: Brianshmrian in Seattle, WA.Posted: April 5th, 2016 09:04PM
Ambulance Provider: American Medical ResponseDistance: 15 miles
I had to be transported from the Ballard ER to the Edmonds ICU. I was barely conscious at the time and don't remember being given a menu of ambulance companies and prices to choose from.
How much should an ambulance ride cost? Can they charge whatever they want? We are not consumers or rational economic actors with knowledge of prices. We are semi-conscious sick people being put in ambulances by medical staff.
My insurance company (Ambetter) seems to think the service is only worth $734.43. Unfortunately since American Medical Response is out-of-network, they still want the other $1,584.28. So who is running the scam here? Is it American Medical Response or is it Ambetter?
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Cost of Ambulance in Palos Park, IL
Amount: $2,015.00
Posted by: Janpm in Palos Park, IL.Posted: March 30th, 2016 06:03AM
Ambulance Provider: Kurtz ambulance service incDistance: .5 miles
My Dad was at a nursing home without a hip after surgery & had a follow up DR's appointment down the street. He was in horrible pain, in traction, & could not sit up. The nursing home ordered gurney transport. I didn't ask how much because prior gurney transport cost $600.00 round trip & it was more miles. When I received the bill I was shocked almost 3+ times more than the prior transport. They sent 3 people who pretty much just moved my Dad in & out of the office & were on the computer the rest of the time. I will always ask the amount in the future. Didn't realize it would very so much. Highway robbery in IL.
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cost of anbulance from Chesapeake General to CHKD in Norfolk VA
Amount: $4,200.00
Posted by: Jerome S in Chesapeake, VA.Posted: February 10th, 2016 11:02AM
Ambulance Provider: children's hospital norfolk vaDistance: 20 miles
I would like to know if this a valid charge. It seems like an inflated cost by the hospital.
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Northern Virginia
Amount: $1,520.00
Posted by: NoVa in Fairfax, VA.Posted: January 19th, 2016 04:01PM
Ambulance Provider: Medical Transport ServicesDistance: 34.3
Charged at $919 for BLS + $17.50/mile for 34 miles, wondering if this is out of line?? No choice at hospital.
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