An out-of-state auditor recently concluded that the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources could save more than $5 million a year by hiring a broker to manage Medicaid and other insurance reimbursements for nonemergency medical transports — things like taking patients to doctors’ appointments or scheduled medical procedures. If West Virginia were to implement a broker program public ambulance services, like our own, be forced to close. Without the vital funds from Medicaid reimbursements from non-emergency transports the Clay Ambulance Service may not be able to remain in our community.
County Commission President Mike Pierson recently wrote a letter to Governor Earl Ray Tomblin requesting that this legislation not be passed or that ambulance services be excluded from the broker agreement. The Clay Ambulance Service provides employment for many people within the county, as well as quality care for individuals who live here. Commissioner Pierson stressed that with the decreased county budget unable to provide money to the agency, the ambulance service depended on non-emergency transports to provide the necessary funding for fuel, maintenance and employee’s salaries. Senator Sam Cann and Delegate John Pino are supportive of the ambulance service and will back efforts for the transports to remain unchanged.