Governor Kathy Hochul has enacted a significant piece of legislation, known as the “Direct Pay Bill,” aimed at supporting ambulance service providers across New York State.
Signed into law on Friday, the bill mandates that health insurance plans provide direct reimbursement to ambulance services for transporting out-of-network patients. This move is seen as a major relief for emergency medical services (EMS) companies that have long advocated for such a measure.
The new law addresses a critical financial concern for ambulance providers, ensuring they receive direct payments from health insurers rather than relying on patients as intermediaries. Jeffrey Call, the chairperson of the United New York Ambulance Network, expressed gratitude for the bill’s passage, emphasizing that it removes the burden from patients who previously were caught in a complicated and often inefficient payment process. The law guarantees that ambulance services, regardless of their network status, will receive reimbursements directly from insurance companies for their responses.
The implementation of the Direct Pay Bill is expected to streamline the payment process for EMS providers, reducing financial strain and allowing them to focus on delivering timely and essential care. While further details and comments from Governor Hochul’s office are awaited, the new legislation marks a significant development in the healthcare and emergency services sector in New York State, potentially setting a precedent for similar reforms elsewhere. The direct reimbursement model is anticipated to benefit both ambulance providers and patients, simplifying transactions and ensuring more efficient healthcare delivery.
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