Air Ambulance Companies have, so far, been shielded by the Airline Deregulation Act. As a result, the states have not been able to interfere in the affairs of air ambulance companies, especially billing. Now, with the introduction of FAA Reauthorisation Act, this is set to change. The Act has already found acceptance in the United States House of Representatives. The air ambulance companies have been divided in their opinion about this act. Groups like AAMS or Association of Air Medical Services and SOAR or Save Our Air Medical Resources are terming the new regulation a ‘risk to the lives of patients’. However, there are groups that are differing with this opinion too.
There is a Group of Air Ambulance Companies that Supports the New Act
ACCT or Association of Critical Care Transport which has a huge number of air ambulance companies as members (especially the hospital-based or non-profit ones) is in support of the new act. They have openly come out saying that there is nothing in it that would put the lives of the patients in danger. One another fact to be noted is that AAMS and SOAR are comprised of some of the biggest for-profit air ambulance companies.
These organizations have repeatedly stated that the medical insurance companies must compensate them better and take up the responsibility of reducing the burden of air ambulance bills. However, as air ambulance companies have drawn bigger bills, the percentage of coverage has, obviously, not caught up. In turn, this has been putting a huge burden on the end consumers, prompting an outrage that has resonated with the political class. The result has been FA Reauthorization Act that seems to be going forward in full swing.
What’s in it for People in General?
It might translate into lesser number of air ambulance companies and also less employment opportunities or stunted growth prospects within the air ambulance industry, but that, for the time being, remains a speculation. However, it is certain that the air ambulance companies will not be able to charge huge amounts as the state would now have the power to intervene.