Schumer pushes for ambulance provider cash boost

Posted: Updated:

Sen. Charles Schumer is pushing for a bill to boost Medicare reimbursements to Orange and Rockland County ambulance providers.

Schumer says ambulance providers are the first on the scene in an emergency and have been under-funded for years in Hudson Valley. ?Every time one of our ambulances goes out on a Medicare run they are paid less than the costs. You can't keep doing it like that,? says Schumer. He says companion bills in the U.S. Senate and House would change that.

New Windsor Ambulance Corps Chief Chris Dineen says Medicare does not fully reimburse them for service calls, which is a major problem with funding. Dineen says without increased funding, they can?t invest in top-of-the-line equipment to keep patient care intact. The funds would also go to GPS systems so ambulances can get to patients as quickly as possible.

The bill is expected to make a big difference in Hudson Valley since about 40 percent of the ambulance runs are for Medicare patients.

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