Chapter 4.60
BASIC LIFE SUPPORT TRANSPORT FEES

Sections:

4.60.010    BLS transport fees imposed.

4.60.020    Medicare and Medicaid.

4.60.030    Policy and financial assistance.

4.60.010 BLS transport fees imposed.

A. All persons transported for basic life support (BLS) by the city’s fire department shall be charged and billed BLS transport fees by the city at rates set and adjusted as necessary by resolution of the city council. The city manager or his/her designee shall establish a procedure to bill and collect BLS transport fees. The city may contract with a billing service and/or collection agency to bill and collect the same.

B. A resident of the city, or an employee at, and transported from, a business within the city, who supplies the city with information and documentation of his medical insurance policy necessary to bill his insurance provider for BLS transport fees, and who assigns his insurance benefits for the same to the city, shall not be billed for that portion of the BLS transport fees that is in excess of amounts paid by his insurer(s).

C. A person who does not meet the criteria set forth in subsection B of this section, who supplies the city with information and documentation of his medical insurance policy necessary to bill his insurance provider for BLS transport fees, and who assigns his insurance benefits for the same to the city, shall be billed for that portion of the BLS transport fees that is in excess of amounts paid by his insurer(s).

D. A person, regardless of residence, who does not supply the city with information and documentation of his medical insurance policy necessary to bill his insurance provider for EMS transport fees because he is unable or unwilling, or because he does not have any type of insurance coverage for such charges, or who fails to assigns his insurance benefits for the same to the city, shall be billed for the entire BLS transport fees.

E. The total net revenue generated from BLS transport fees, fees collected pursuant to Chapter 15.02 MICC, and revenues received by the city from any voter-approved advanced life support levy shall not exceed the city’s total costs in providing emergency medical services.

F. The use of the term “insurance” or any variation thereof in this section shall include Medicare and Medicaid.

G. The use of the term “basic life support” or “BLS” in this section shall mean: transportation by ground ambulance vehicle and the provision of medically necessary supplies and services, including BLS ambulance services as defined by the state (Chapter 18.73 RCW). The ambulance must be staffed by an individual who is qualified in accordance with state and local laws as an emergency medical technician basic (EMT basic). Basic emergency medical technicians perform noninvasive, basic emergency treatment skills. (Ord. 12C-08 § 1; Ord. 12C-01 § 1; Ord. 11C-01 § 1).

4.60.020 Medicare and Medicaid.

Charges for the EMS transport authorized by this chapter shall be construed and implemented in a manner consistent with applicable Medicare and Medicaid requirements, when applicable. If any method or procedures authorized by this chapter for the purpose of establishing, implementing, imposing or collection of charges for EMS transport is found to conflict with Medicare and/or Medicaid requirements, the conflicting part of this chapter shall be inoperative to the extent the same applies to Medicare and/or Medicaid. The operation of the remainder of this chapter shall remain unaffected. (Ord. 11C-01 § 1).

4.60.030 Policy and financial assistance.

A. The city of Mercer Island’s policy is that ability to pay is never a condition of service. All aspects of prehospital service shall be provided to all patients without discrimination toward those with no ability or inadequate means to pay.

B. The city manager or his/her designee shall establish a program consistent with criteria and rules set forth in WAC 246-453-001 through 246-453-060 to provide financial assistance and debt forgiveness to persons that do not have the ability to pay in full for EMS transport charges imposed in this chapter. (Ord. 11C-01 § 1).