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Affordable Care Act Impact on Air Ambulance Cost

A recent prediction by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) offered some good news for the projected costs of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). It’s now estimated that the ACA will cost just over $1 trillion over the next decade compared to the original projection of $1.2 trillion.

The CBO says the cut in the estimated cost comes from tighter controls by insurance companies that offer plans on health care exchanges. Because the plans on the exchanges pay health care providers less and have tighter management of treatment options it will lead to lower premiums and taxpayer subsidies.

What does the Affordable Care Act mean for air ambulances?

There are provisions written into the ACA that specifically cover air ambulances and what they could end up costing, or not costing you. The ACA allows air ambulance firms in rural areas to receive 2-percent more for covered Medicare services and 3-percent more in urban areas. That means the services would cost at least that much more had the ACA not been enacted.

As far as health care options for you, there are several choices and picking the right plan might get confusing. About a year ago an analysis of a Blue Cross/Blue Shield heath care plan. The study in March 2013 found that a typical plan would only cover an average of between $4,000-$5,000 for an air ambulance. Depending on your coverage needs that could only cover about one-third of the total bill.

Other plans in accordance with the ACA do offer more substantial coverages. The UnitedHealthCare packages cover air ambulances if transportation requiring basic life support is needed if it would take a ground ambulance 30-60 minutes or more to transport an enrollee if the person needs immediate medical attention. It also includes provisions if there are traffic or weather issues or if being transported by ground ambulances could injure the enrollee. The package does not list the limits on coverage, however.

It’s vital that you explore the different options in the marketplace if you might need air ambulances. Because packages vary so greatly it’s important to talk with someone so you can ask the questions you need answered. The ACA has created more health care options than ever before so knowing what is best for you will help you find the right plan.

At Travel Care Air we are the leading experts in air ambulances. Our air ambulances offer cutting edge technology and a staff that will take special care to meet your needs. We can also help you navigate your heath care plan to find out how air ambulances will factor into your bills. For more information and for more about our air ambulances and travel news and health tips please follow us on Twitter.

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