AMR closure: a bellwether of things to come?

GMR’s Brian Henricksen joins Rob Lawrence for a frank discussion on operational deficits

This episode of EMS One-Stop With Rob Lawrence is brought to you by Lexipol, the experts in policy, training, wellness support and grants assistance for first responders and government leaders. To learn more, visit

On Sept. 12, 2022, American Medical Response announced it is to close its Los Angeles County non-emergency operations over the next 180 days. One of the key reasons is one faced by all ambulance operators at this time – insufficient levels of Medicare reimbursement. Against this backdrop, GMR (AMR’s international EMS division) predicts that its Los Angeles division is on course for an operational deficit of over $3.5 million.

In this episode of the Inside EMS podcast, Brian Henricksen, California-based regional director for GMR, joins host Rob Lawrence for a frank discussion on the issues in LA and they discuss the fact that this may be the bellwether of things to come across the nation.

Rob is also the executive director of the California Ambulance Association and the economics of ambulance service operations in the state are close to his heart. California has not increased its Medi-Cal reimbursement for private ambulance operators since the late 1990s. The current Medi-Cal base rate for private ambulance services sits just above $100, which is far below the cost of providing transport. The State’s Medi-Cal reimbursement rate is one of the lowest in the country, but it also has the highest operational costs for ambulance transports.

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