IAFC urges leaders to reject AAA cost reporting plan

The organization is asking fire service leaders not to sign on to the American Ambulance Association’s newly proposed cost reporting system

CHANTILLY, Va. — The International Association of Fire Chiefs, along with the International Association of Fire Fighters and the Metropolitan Fire Chiefs Association, is urging fire service leaders not to support the American Ambulance Association’s newly proposed EMS cost reporting system.

Instead, according to a press release, the groups support the use of the Medicare Ambulance Add-On Payments, which was restored by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018. The act also required the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to create a system of data collection to gather information on EMS costs across the country.

The organizations support CMS’s cost surveying to reform the Medicare Ambulance Fee Schedule and demonstrate the “value of permitting reimbursement for alternative EMS delivery models such as treat-and-release and transportation to alternative destinations,” according to the press release.

“The IAFC, IAFF, and Metro Chiefs have developed a fire-based EMS cost reporting work group to provide recommendations for CMS’ new cost surveying system,” the press release said. “We intend to recommend that CMS adopt a system similar to the cost reporting system utilized by more than 1,000 fire departments across nearly a dozen states as part of the Ground Emergency Medical Transportation program.”

The organization urged leaders to support their efforts and “reject overtures to sign on to the AAA alternative effort that may be harmful to fire-based EMS agencies.”

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