Historically individuals and communities have relied on air ambulance membership programs to steer clear of possible huge bills. Until now, individuals who use air ambulance services have been held responsible for clearing the balance payments if their insurance providers refuse to reimburse the cost. The air ambulance membership programs would insulate people from such financial disasters in exchange for a small annual membership fee. All members would be insulated from balance or surprise bills. However, the problem was that such memberships would have to be availed through multiple programs as each one would only cover a particular number of air ambulance service providers.
Air Ambulance Membership Programs and the Advent of No Surprises Act
The Federal Government has passed the No Surprises Act which has come into effect this year. According to this Act, individuals are no longer liable to clear balance payments in case the entire amount demanded by air ambulance companies is not covered by their health insurance providers. It is now a matter that needs to be sorted out between air ambulance and health insurance companies. In the absence of an agreement between them, they are now required to take the matter to an arbitrator, while keeping the consumer out of such proceedings.
Utility of Air Ambulance Membership Programs in the Current Scenario
The No Surprises Act has rendered air ambulance membership programs meaningless. People are no longer worried about the amount that they might have to shell out of their pockets in case the insurance company refuses to cover it. There are now several checks and balances in place that protect consumers from such liabilities. This is the precise reason why air ambulance membership programs are being discontinued these days. The latest in the line is Classic Air Medical which is now discontinuing its membership programs.