Ambulance fees going up in Great Bend

GREAT BEND, Kansas – For the first time since 2009, Great Bend’s EMS rates will go up.

Great Bend Fire and EMS Chief Mike Napolitano says, “We just haven’t taken a good hard look at it until last year, and we’re just now getting to where we can adjust it.”

The city found that their prices were well under the standard, and their costs have continued to climb.

“It’s not something that we look at every year, perhaps we should but we don’t look at it every year” said Napolitano.

The increase is substantial, based on what kind of services you need.

Non emergency basic care will go up 66 percent and emergency care goes up about 28 percent. For more advanced care, the non emergency paramedic level care will go up 70 percent to $425.

More advanced care and life support will also go up, 18 percent to 21 percent each.

“It’ll hopefully bring a little more revenue in, into the general fund and provide the ems level of care that we do,” said Napolitano.

The increased ambulance rates are based off of Blue Cross Blue Shield’s allowable billing.

“So if we go out on an ambulance call and Blue Cross Blue Shield or Medicare deem it necessary that we transport that patient, then the bill will be taken care of minus any deductible or coinsurance that they have,” said Napolitano. “So it’s not like we’re trying to pull any more money out of their pockets by any means.”

Mileage charges will also increase from $10.75 to $13.50 per mile and the fire department hopes to provide options for those who struggle with the bill.

“If they have difficulty satisfying that we work with them on monthly payments,” said Napolitano.

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