Unpaid ambulance fees becoming tax-payers' bill

photo by flickr user ynkefan1

When we talk about things like lack of funding to staff a new library and the possibility of teachers taking a pay cut next year, it only makes sense that we go after a possible source of revenue for the county and this one comes in the form of ambulance rides.

While it's hard to put a price on the life-saving benefit of being transported to the hospital in the event of an emergency, ambulance services are NOT cheap.  Unfortunately, contact and billing information isn't always possible to collect during an ambulance ride.  As reported by WMBF, that leads to many unpaid bills, especially by tourists, requiringHorry County tax payers make up the difference.  Now there's a study being done about the amount of money being written off each year and how better bill for or recoup it.

According to Horry County Fire and Rescue statistics, there were 39474 ambulance calls in 2011, which indicates a steady increase from the 36950 calls in 2008.  The busiest months are, not surprisingly, May, June, July, and August.


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