I saw this article, http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/05/health/think-the-er-was-expensive-look-at-the-ambulance-bill.html?_r=0 , recently and it made me wonder.
In the realm of private EMS, it seems like all the rage these days in high performance EMS is about customer service. Now if you’re in any other business and the salesman doesn’t have all the information, he isn’t going to do very well. Somehow though, in EMS sending out the salesman(medic), performing what amounts to scare tactics followed by lack of information is not only considered acceptable, it’s the preferred method.
I’ve seen very few places, maybe I’m not looking in the right places, that inform their medics of all the various charges that the patient may encounter. Now, if I go into other businesses, I can easily be shown the charges up front prior to being provided with the service. Even in other medical realms if you ask nicely, you’ll get the costs up front. But routinely in EMS I’ve seen where you can’t seem to get any sort of straight answer other than we can only tell you how much it’ll cost after you take the ride. Sounds kind of like the oft quoted statement from Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi “…we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it…”
Not really the way I’d want to run a business or provide great customer care. But I’m probably not running those places for some reason beyond my ability to comprehend. And all along I thought we were here for the patients….my bad.
Rosenthal, Elisabeth. “Think the E.R. Is Expensive? Look at How Much It Costs to Get There.” The New York Times. N.p., 4 Dec. 2013. Web. 4 Dec. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/05/health/think-the-er-was-expensive-look-at-the-ambulance-bill.html?_r=0>.