May 09, 2016
An ambulance company added insult to injury after billing an Indiana woman’s family for an emergency transport she didn’t live long enough to take.
Sheila Breck was killed Sept. 23 when an ambulance slammed into her SUV at 85 mph as she was going to pick up her daughter from work, reported WRTV-TV.
The emergency crew that responded to the Hancock County crash, which also injured two ambulance crew members and a pickup truck driver, called for a medical helicopter for the 64-year-old Breck — who died before it arrived.
But her family was billed for the emergency helicopter, anyway.
“About a week later, I was trying to deal with all of the insurance issues, car insurance issues, and PHI, the air ambulance company, started calling me and telling me she had this bill for $25,000,” her daughter, April Breck, told the TV station.
PHI Air Medical insists it’s not a bill, but simply a “statement” — although the document includes an “amount enclosed” box and a field to write in a credit card number, and Breck said the company sends her one every month.
“Sure looks like a bill to me,” she said.
The company issued a statement explaining why Breck’s family was assessed a fee for its “base rate,” which can vary by location.
“If our helicopter and crew have been called to a scene to provide critical care services to a patient in need, this means we have incurred costs on our end to provide this specialized care,” the company said.