Why do we bill?
We bring the emergency room to your bedside or to the scene of a remote accident with advanced equipment and highly trained personnel in a prompt manor which comes at a significant cost. In order to offset our impact on taxpayers, we bill for services rendered just like your doctor’s office or any hospital.
Ambulance transport is covered under most insurance packages. Under Medicare guidelines, we must make every effort to collect all unpaid fees. This is to ensure a ‘standard practice’ of collection is in place, as opposed to showing favoritism to any specific individual.
Records Request Forms & Protected Patient Information
Please see our Town of Colonie EMS – Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP) document for information on how patient information is handled.
Records requests can be made by filling out the follow form: Authorization for Release of Heath Information pursuant to HIPAA
Frequently Asked Billing Questions
Q. What to do when you receive a bill?
A. You have received a bill for one of three reasons:
1. We were unable to get your insurance information at the time of transport. Please call or email us your insurance information and we will submit a claim to your insurance for payment.
2. We submitted a claim to your insurance company and they will be sending the check directly to you. When you receive the check submit it to us for payment. Town of Colonie C/O the Comptroller’s Office PO Box 508 Newtonville NY 12128-0508.
3. You have no insurance and you receive a bill for the ambulance transport. Please call us! We will assist you with payment options.
Q. How can I pay my bill?
A. You can call and pay your bill or copayment with a credit card by calling (518) 783-2817 or;
A. You can send in your payment to the Town of Colonie C/O the Comptroller’s Office PO Box 508 Newtonville NY 12128-0508. The check should be made out to the Town of Colonie.
Q. Why do you need my signature to bill my insurance?
A. Medicare and other insurance carriers will not allow us to process a bill and receive payment for the services we provided you without your signature on the appropriate form. Please print out the appropriate form, sign it and mail, fax, or email it to us.
Q. Why did I receive a “Collection Letter” from the Town Attorney?
A. We have attempted to contact you by mail and you have failed to respond to our requests for information or payment. Please contact our office immediately to avoid any further action. (518) 783-2817
Q. How do I break down what I was charged for?
A. Ambulance bills are very simple. The charges are divided into two categories: Base Rate, this includes all the medical care that was provided to you during the transport; and Loaded Mileage, this is the mileage from the point of pickup to the hospital.
Q. What is the difference between BLS, ALS1, and ALS2?
A. BLS stands for Basic Life Support. When you see this on the bill it means the care provided was basic and didn’t require any advanced interventions.
A. ALS1, stands for Advanced Life Support One. When you see this it means you required an evaluation by a Paramedic based on the information obtained by dispatch or your condition required medication to treat it.
A. ALS2, stands for Advanced Life Support Two. When you see this it means your condition required several medications to treat or advanced interventions such as airway management.
Q. How do you come up with the ambulance fee rates?
A. The cost of readiness varies from community to community to have trained Paramedics on standby waiting to respond to 911 calls for assistance. The Town provides a high quality EMS service and does not to make a profit. It works hard to control costs and reduce the burden on the taxpayers for providing the service. The ambulance fees are set by the Town Board every year.
Please direct any questions to our billing department at 518.782.2645 Ext 2.