This is a touchy subject since many of us in the mountain community personally know someone whose lives were saved by air ambulances, but the air ambulance industry has radically changed over the past decade. What is happening now amounts to price gouging for unnecessary “life flights” that is perpetrated by private equity.
“The result is a highly competitive atmosphere where for-profit air ambulance companies can essentially charge whatever they want,” – Consumers Union
Image: NBC Bay Area
According to Managed Care Magazine, a Massachusetts woman received a jaw-dropping $474,725 bill for a medical Learjet ride from Kansas, where she got sick while attending a family wedding, back to Boston. Not all bills are so dramatic, but the Missouri Department of Insurance found that in 2017 the average out-of-pocket bill for an air ambulance patient was $20,000.