Health Care

Surprise ambulance bills targeted by states

The emergency ground transportation was left out of previous efforts to help with crushing medical debt.
A Denver Health ambulance barrels down the westbound lanes of Speer Boulevard on Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

States that led the way in prohibiting surprise medical bills are returning to address costs for ground ambulances, a source of millions of dollars in health care debt that was carved out of most state and federal legislation passed in recent years.

California’s AB 716, which seeks to prevent surprise out-of-network bills for ambulance rides and goes into effect on Jan. 1, will bring the number of states that have enacted ground ambulance billing protections to 13. More states are likely to consider similar legislation this year.

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