Thursday, October 28, 2010

air ambulance billing introduction


Medically appropriate air ambulance transportation is a covered service regardless of the State or region in which it is rendered. However, carriers approve claims only if the beneficiary’s medical condition is such that transportation by either basic or advanced life support ground ambulance is not appropriate.

Air ambulance services may be paid only for ambulance services to a hospital. Other destinations, e.g., skilled nursing facility, a physician’s office, or a patient’s home may not be paid air ambulance.

There are two categories of air ambulance services; fixed wing (airplane) and rotary wing (helicopter) aircraft. The higher operational costs of the two types of aircraft are recognized with two distinct payment amounts for air ambulance mileage. The air ambulance mileage rate is calculated per actual loaded (patient onboard) miles flown and is expressed in statute miles (not nautical miles).

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