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Ambulance services top national Medicare payment list

In South Carolina, 17 of the top 30 Medicare payments in 2012 went to ambulance services

The State

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Eight of Medicare’s 10 highest payments to health care entities in South Carolina for services in 2012 were in one specialty — ambulance service.

And the top five S.C. physicians on the Medicare payment list were all in Myrtle Beach, four at the same practice. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released national payment information for the first time Wednesday. The information has little value when it comes to consumer health care decisions. Instead, the federal agency said it hopes the media and the general public will use the information to help root out waste and fraud.

But the first thing most people ask is: Who got paid the most? The answer is ambulance services and cancer doctors. Sick elderly people need transportation, from home to hospitals, and elderly people often need the expensive drugs used to fight cancer.

Read full story: Ambulance services, cancer doctors top Medicare payment list

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