Austin city council creates pilot payment system for Paramedic Practitioner Program

The payment program will allow more funds to be collected for low acuity calls, and provide expanded care


By Rachel Engel

AUSTIN — The city council approved the creation of a pilot payment system for the city’s Paramedic Practitioner Program (PPP), which is focused on care for low acuity patients.

When a patient calls 911 with a low acuity request, the program sends one paramedic practitioner to respond to incidents, such as a “wound that needs minor stitching or a child with an ear infection,” the Austin-American Statesman reported, which prevents unnecessary hospital trips.

Paramedic Practitioner Travis Baker, left, and Austin-Travis County EMS Paramedic Mike Leibin check on Donna Chapman after she called 911 for breathing issues on Sept. 2. Baker treated Chapman on the spot, avoiding a trip to the hospital. (Photo/Ana Ramirez, Austin American-Statesman)
Paramedic Practitioner Travis Baker, left, and Austin-Travis County EMS Paramedic Mike Leibin check on Donna Chapman after she called 911 for breathing issues on Sept. 2. Baker treated Chapman on the spot, avoiding a trip to the hospital. (Photo/Ana Ramirez, Austin American-Statesman) (Photo/Ana Ramirez, Austin American-Statesman)

The pilot program will allow the city to collect fees from Medicaid and Medicare, and the funds will be used to expand the program to more residents.

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