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Workers’ compensation insurance covers a wide range of medical expenses for injuries sustained by employees completing work-related duties. Depending on one’s line of work, injuries may be severe enough to warrant emergency treatment. Sometimes, the cost of necessary procedures can be extensive, and workers’ compensation can be a great boon to injured employees.
Let’s imagine you’ve suffered an injury at work. You’ve already received treatment and are recuperating at home when you receive a bill. It’s for the ambulance ride you took to the hospital. You’ve already filed your workers’ compensation claim so you’re confused. Are you responsible for this bill?
Many people may not realize that getting a ride in an ambulance comes with its own costs. With the fluctuating costs between states, counties, and even towns and cities, it can be hard to pin down the exact cost of an ambulance ride. The type of ambulance also affects the price, as do the number of miles traveled, and provision of oxygen. Unless you live in an area where taxes pay for EMS services, there’s a strong chance you’ll see a bill in your future if you head to the ER in an ambulance.
In America, ambulance costs can be anywhere between $224 to $2204. For those who live in larger cities, like Los Angeles, the average price of an ambulance ride is over $1000, even for very short trips. That’s no small amount to pay, especially if you have to miss work during your recovery.
In short, the answer is yes.
Workers’ compensation is there to cover any medical expenses associated with injuries sustained while working. This includes treatment costs and lost wages for periods you were unable to work. Part of those treatment costs does, in fact, include any ambulance services you may have received. Workers’ compensation may have limits on some other forms of treatment, but necessary emergency transport is not one of those areas.
Upon seeing an ambulance bill, you may be wondering if something went wrong with your workers’ compensation claim, especially if you are still in the process of completing it. Was the claim rejected? Does your claim not cover the ride? Was there some other problem?
Fortunately, this is usually not the case. In the process of transporting you, the ambulance may not have time to gather all your necessary workers’ compensation information. They may not even know that your case is one that qualifies for workers’ compensation. What they will know instead is your personal information collected through the hospital, which they use to bill you.
This doesn’t mean that workers’ compensation will not cover the costs, just that you need to take some additional steps.
When you receive an ambulance bill and workers’ compensation will cover it, you should:
This should be enough information for workers’ compensation to handle your ambulance costs. You can also talk to your claims adjuster to see if any other paperwork is necessary to cover the bill.
If you have ongoing trouble getting your ambulance bill paid, you should consult a skilled workers’ compensation attorney. A lawyer can provide a free consultation to understand your circumstances and help you select the best course of action.