You're blaming the wrong people...you should be blaming the lawyers.Not "Sad but true", just "True".
Too bad the people we elect to run our government don't grasp this simple fact.
You're blaming the wrong people...you should be blaming the lawyers.
I've been an EMT since 1978, and back then we COULD refuse to transport people who did not warrant a 9-1-1 ambulance ride.
Enter the lawyers, a couple of lawsuits, and we can't do that anymore.
And that's not a liberal or conservative issue, either. BOTH sides are in bed with the legal profession (most politicians are lawyers).
Great link. Thanks Jim!The point of the initial article Charles posted is sort of being lost in this political discussion, Western Eagle County Ambulance (WCAD) and at least one other service in the state are going to begin to try the Community Paramedic model which has been successful in reducing this system abuse in many other rural areas of the country.
communityparamedic.org > Home
You are asking a simple question with a complicated answer.The article mentions that the average ambulance call is $300-$400. I'm assuming this is what Denver Health charges? Just curious what the actual 'break-even' charge for an ambulance call is? Most agencies seem to charge a per call fee + mileage + supplies + procedures (see Littleton Fire website, etc.). But since the paramedics are paid a salary regardless of number of calls that would be a fixed cost. So what I'm asking is how much more a 1 hour EMS call is versus if the crew was in-service for that hour. This would be 'at-cost' for the agency for gas, supplies, etc. not the amount they actually charge. In other words how much they would have to charge to break even.
No question there was a lot of variables - but for simplification this is what I meant. There is a fire service based EMS that shares it station with an Engine company. Not looking for any portion of the fixed costs or intangibles. I'm just looking at a single EMS call where they go out for say a fainted party no meds, only transport. Just curious when they quote an article how much is actual direct cost to the department just for that call vs. unrealized revenue when the bill isn't paid.You are asking a simple question with a complicated answer.
Think about all the MANY things that go into providing the "service" of one call.
Salaries are one, but you have equipment, disposables, fuel, etc.
Then add a portion of all fixed costs, vehicle, building, etc.
Then add a factor for intangibles, training, support staff, overhead, etc.
Welcome to the field of "Management accounting".
Now, are you interested in only the variable costs associated with a specific run, or a average run or the marginal cost of a specific run or typical run, or the total assignable cost, or the total allotted costs?
Sorry, just having fun.
OK, it was never "fun", but more like a challenge.
Very true, Eric.The cost vs bennefit for a fire department really isn't that great generally. Its a win for the department because they get more firefighters on the street and a win for the community because they get highly trained medics at their door fast. The problem rises not even from non-emergent incidents but from transports where people don't have insurance or can't pay. Most departments run their EMS budget from EMS earnings for the most part, if EMS earnings are down then what? Money has start coming from other places and usually its more from our tax dollars.
I'm not an expert on the subject but most FD's are starting to see that it costs more money to run fire based ambulances than its worth.