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Alpena City Fire Dept.’s New ‘Treat No Transport’ Fee

The Alpena City Fire Department’s billing agency requested they implement a ‘treat no transport’ fee, where a first responder would arrive on scene, provide an assessment, perform treatment of some kind, and if  the person refuses transportation to a hospital, the department can charge an insurance company the cost of transporting an emergency vehicle. This is a common practice among most agencies.

“Basically, they feel that any dollar we don’t recover is basically profits to the insurance companies,” said Alpena City Fire Chief Rob Edmonds. “So you pay for these benefits and they’re available, so why not recover as much of the costs as you can?”

Based on the number of treat no transports they deal with in a year, the department estimates they can generate about 63 or 64 thousand dollars annually.

“Currently, right now, we don’t tap into that at all if you will to recover some of our costs,” said Edmonds. “This would allow the insurance company to get billed for that no transport at that time.”

It won’t have any effect on people’s wallets, it’s simply a charge the department had not utilized before, and now plans to in order to recover costs.

“Even somebody who falls; they still need an assessment to see that there’s no injuries, because a lot of times we’ll find something that will give us that indication that somebody should go up and be evaluated, they always have that right to decline treatment or transport,” said Edmonds.

The department will go to the Courts and Public Safety Committee next week in order to get full board approval.