Q. How is Lake EMS structured?
A. Lake EMS is a not-for-profit corporation that is owned by Lake county. The county has oversight through a Board of Directors with membership consisting of all five county commissioners, three city representatives, and one local hospital representative. Lake EMS is funded through a combination of ad valorem taxes and user fees.
Q. Is Lake EMS affiliated with any hospitals?
A. No. Lake EMS is a not-for-profit corporation owned by Lake county.
Q. How are the Lake EMS rates determined?
A. Rates are determined through local market studies, carrier allowables, as well as budgetary processes, and are reviewed and approved by the Lake EMS Board of Directors each year. For more information about Lake EMS rates, see the Billing Rates page.
Q. Is the bill for ambulance covered by insurance?
A. In most cases, yes. However, this depends in large part on the type of coverage that the patient has and whether the service is considered “Medically Necessary” by the patient’s insurance carrier. For more information, call the Lake EMS Customer Service Department at 352.385.9006.
Q. Who should I contact if I have a question on my bill?
A. Call the Lake EMS Customer Service Department at 352.385.9006. For long-distance calls, use the toll free number at 866.735-7515.
Q. I pay for ambulance on my tax bill, why do I also get billed when I use the service?
A. Lake EMS is funded through a combination of ad valorem taxes and user fees. To minimize the impact on the entire citizenry of Lake county, it was decided to impact everyone for the availability of the service, and only the users for actual usage of the service. In this way, the taxes necessary to support the ambulance service can be held to a minimum.
Q. I was recently transported by ambulance and Medicare denied my bill for Medical Necessity. Why did they deny and what are my rights?
A. The Medicare program will only pay for ambulance services that it deems “Medically Necessary”. In all cases, other means of transportation must be contraindicated due to the patient’s condition, regardless of whether other means are available. In simpler words, the patient’s condition must be acute and such that transport by other means would be endanger the patient’s life, limb or bodily organs. Roughly 20% of the transports that we perform on an annual basis do not meet these criteria.
A patient has the right to appeal Medicare’s decision. In the event that a patient’s bill is rejected, they can file an appeal for reconsideration. Simply obtain all of the information in regards to the service (i.e. ambulance run form, emergency room notes, physician notes, discharge orders, lab results, etc.) and mail them to the Medicare carrier requesting an appeal. For more information, call the Lake EMS Customer Service Department at 352.385.9006.