New SNF PPS Edits Highlight the Importance of Facility Agreements

On April 1, 2019, CMS implemented a new series of Common Working File (CWF) edits that are intended to better identify ground ambulance transports that are furnished in connection with an outpatient hospital service that is properly bundled to the skilled nursing facility (SNF) under the SNF Consolidated Billing regime. These edits work by comparing the ambulance claim to the associated outpatient hospital claim.  Hospital claims were already subject to CWF edits designed to identify outpatient hospital services that should be bundled to the SNF.  These hospital edits operate by referencing a list of Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) or Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes that correspond to outpatient hospital services that are expressly excluded from SNF Consolidated Billing.  Hospital claims for outpatient services that are submitted with one of these excluded codes bypass the existing CWF edits, and are then sent to the appropriate Medicare Administrative Contractor for further editing and payment.  Hospital claims submitted without one of these codes are denied for SNF Consolidated Billing. The new ambulance edits will extend these process one step further.  The ambulance claim will be associated with the outpatient hospital claim on the same date.  To the extent that hospital claim...

This content is available only to AAA members.
Log In or Register

Member Update on Balance Billing

This morning Ruth Hazdovac and Aidan Camas of AAA staff and Kathy Lester, Esq, Healthcare Consultant to the AAA attended a briefing held by the House Energy & Commerce Committee on the issue of surprise/balance billing. At the briefing, staff for Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Greg Walden (R-OR) announced that they would be releasing a bipartisan discussion draft, the No Surprises Act, which would “protect consumers from surprise medical bills and increase transparency in our health care system.” As of now, ground and air ambulances are NOT included in the discussion draft. However, the committee is asking for comments on ground and air ambulance and recommendations on how to provide relief to the consumer in this area. The AAA has a Balance Billing Work Group that is hard at work developing a policy recommendation that will work for our members. The House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee Chairman Lloyd Doggett also announced today that the Health Subcommittee will hold a hearing next week entitled “Hearing on Protecting Patients from Surprise Medical Bills.” AAA Staff will be at the briefing and provide a timely update to membership on any developments. The AAA team will be submitting comments and (more…)

EMS Week Activity Survey

EMS Week is May 19-25, 2019. The AAA wants to know how your organization is celebrating  this year! Please let us know what your organization has planned. Also, please be sure to tag the AAA is your EMS Week social media posts so we can “like” and “share” what your organization is doing! The best submissions will also be posted in the AAA weekly digest. Please email info@ambulance.org if you have any questions.

EEO-1 Reporting Requirement Update

In February the American Ambulance Association (AAA) alerted members that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) had announced that it has postponed the opening of EEO-1 data reporting until early March and also extended the deadline for employers to submit their EEO-1 data until May 31, 2019.  Each year, certain federal contractors and employers with 100 or more employees are required to report the EEO-1 Component 1 data which includes information about gender, and race/ethnicity of the employer’s workforce by job type groupings.  This data is used by the EEOC to ensure compliance with the Federal non-discrimination laws. In 2016, the Obama administration required that covered employers report wage and hour data (Component 2) along with their EEO-1 Component 1 data starting in 2017.  However, the Trump administration suspended the EEO-1 pay and hour reporting (Component 2) requirements stating that they were too burdensome for employers.  ON March 4, 2019, after a lengthy legal proceeding, a federal judge lifted the Trump administration stay on wage and hour reporting stating that there was no reason to delay this reporting the Component 2 data. Last week, the EEOC announced that it will collect pay and hour data for the 2017 and 2018...

This content is available only to AAA members.
Log In or Register

President’s Perspective April 2019

Dear Fellow AAA Members, Spring is in full bloom in Washington, D.C., and the American Ambulance Association is hard at work in our nation’s capital advocating for mobile healthcare providers. I am pleased to share with you several updates from your association. Advocacy Progress The AAA continues to forge ahead advocating for the legislative and regulatory priorities of our membership. Earlier this month, more than forty AAA volunteer leaders and members came to Washington, D.C., meeting with more than 100 congressional offices to advocate for Medicare policies and improved claims processing by the Department of Veterans Affairs for emergency ambulance services. (View photos on Facebook.) The AAA has also taken an active role in responding to potentially harmful “surprise billing” legislation. The AAA has been urging Members of Congress to recognize the unique and essential nature of emergency ambulance services and ambulance interfacility mobile healthcare transports. Ambulance service suppliers and providers are already heavily regulated at the local level and struggle with receiving adequate reimbursement. The Congress should protect patient access to ground ambulance services and continue to allow us to balance bill. The AAA is working closely with CMS and the RAND corporation on the development of the ambulance (more…)

Empress Ambulance Service, PatientCare Logistics Solutions Team to Deliver Critical Ambulance and Healthcare Logistics Services in Greater New York  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media contact: Stephen Brown, Cookerly PR 404-419-9224 stephen@cookerly.com Empress Ambulance Service, PatientCare Logistics Solutions Team to Deliver Critical Ambulance and Healthcare Logistics Services in Greater New York    Leading EMS provider in the Tri-State Region to leverage PatientCare’s nationwide scale and resources to extend customer service tradition more than three decades strong   Tyler, Texas and Yonkers, New York (April 18, 2019) – PatientCare Logistics Solutions (PatientCare), a leading provider of ground-based 911 emergency ambulance and other critical healthcare logistics services, has teamed with Empress Ambulance Service (Empress) in Yonkers, NY, to further support the growing needs of the Tri-State Region. Empress provides emergency and non-emergency ambulance services with advanced life support (ALS) and basic life support (BLS) services to municipalities and hospital systems across New York’s Westchester County. Additionally, Empress operates significant ambulance services in the Bronx and Manhattan boroughs, giving the organization a strong overall footprint in Greater New York. Empress, owned and operated for more than 30 years by the Minerva family, is managed today by brothers Mike, Dan and Matt Minerva, as well as long-time colleague Jim O’Connor. These experienced ambulance industry operators will continue to serve their established communities on a full-time (more…)

Workforce Task Force & CAAS GVS Alternate Appointee

The American Ambulance Association seeks volunteers to apply to participate in several capacities, including the NEW Workforce Task Force and as an alternate liaison to the CAAS Ground Vehicle Standards organization. If interested, please complete the form below to submit your application. Selected individuals will be notified by email by June 1. Thank you for your support and participation....

This content is available only to AAA members.
Log In or Register

RFP: Cost Collection SME/Project Director

Request for Proposals: Subject Matter Expert (SME)/ Project Director Ambulance Cost Data Collection Due April 20, 2019 Overview The American Ambulance Association (AAA) invites proposals from qualified interested parties (individual and teams) for the purpose of directing the Ambulance Cost Data Project as a Subject Matter Expert (SME). Introduction As part of the extension of the Ambulance Medicare Add on payments, legislation passed on February 9, 2018, the Congress mandated that ambulance services provide cost data. General requirements of the legislation include the following: Requires notice-and-comment rulemaking May use a cost survey Collect (1) cost; (2) revenue; (3) utilization; and (4) other information determined appropriate by the Secretary Include information: (1) needed to evaluate the extent to which costs are related to payment rates; (2) on the utilization of capital equipment and ambulance capacity; and (3) on different types of ground ambulance services furnished in different geographic locations and low population density areas May revise the system over time Select a representative sample of providers and suppliers from whom to collect data Determined based on the type of providers and suppliers and the geographic locations May not be request same provider or supplier to submit data in two consecutive years Those (more…)