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Home > Topics > Patient Handling
December 05, 2013

Breakdown: Why ambulance rides are so expensive

“There’s a saying that if you’ve seen one emergency medical system, you’ve seen one emergency medical system — no two are alike"

The New York Times

NEW YORK — Kira Milas has no idea who called 911, summoning an ambulance filled with emergency medical technicians. Ms. Milas, 23, was working as a swim instructor for the summer and had swum into the side of the pool, breaking three teeth.

Shaken, she accepted the ambulance ride to Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, Calif. The paramedics applied a neck brace as a precaution.

A week later she received a bill for the 15-minute trip: $1,772.42. Though her employer’s workers’ compensation will cover the bill, she still was stunned at the charge. “We only drove nine miles and it was a non-life-threatening injury,” she said in a phone interview. “I needed absolutely no emergency treatment.”

Read full storyThink the E.R. Is Expensive? Look at How Much It Costs to Get There

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