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New Ambulance Fees announced

From 1 July 2017 NSW residents requiring road, fixed wing aircraft or helicopter or a combination of these, from the scene of an accident, illness or injury to a public hospital or other destination nominated by NSW Ambulance will be charged a call out fee of $372 plus an additional charge of $3.35 per kilometre or part thereof. In NSW, residents who use emergency ambulance services are charged 51 per cent of the actual cost and receive a State Government subsidy of 49 per cent for the remainder. Pensioners, health care or Commonwealth seniors concession card holders, Veterans and individuals who hold basic private health insurance or ‘ambulance only’ cover will remain exempt from ambulance fees in NSW New fees are now in place for the emergency services provided by NSW Ambulance. NSW Ambulance provides high quality clinical care and health related transport services to over 7.5 million people in NSW, distributed across an area of 801,600 square kilometres. Reviewed and adjusted annually in line with IPART (Independent Pricing & Regulatory Tribunal) methodology, the fees have increased on average by two per cent for the 2017/18 financial year. The fees assist NSW Ambulance in remaining financially sustainable. They support the delivery of out-of-hospital emergency medical care to the residents of NSW. They can also be used to assist in the purchase of hi-tech equipment, fleet services and infrastructure. NSW Ambulance fees are subsidised by NSW Government and remain one of the lowest in Australia. After a subsidy is applied NSW residents requiring emergency services (road ambulance, fixed wing aircraft, helicopter or a combination of these) will be charged a call out fee of $372 plus an additional charge of $3.35 per kilometre or part thereof. Compared to 2016/17, the increase is $8 for an emergency call out and an additional 6 cents per kilometre travelled. The NSW Government funds 49 per cent of each ambulance invoice for NSW residents. Several groups remain exempt from ambulance fees including patients that are pensioners, health care card holders and/or eligible veterans. Individuals with basic private health insurance or ‘ambulance only’ cover are likewise exempt. NSW Ambulance also has a hardship policy where patients with special needs are eligible to apply to have their fees waived, paid in part or deferred.

Is your URGENCY an EMERGENCY? NSW Ambulance has officially launched their new winter campaign. Our Triple Zero (000) call takers answer a call for help on average every 26 seconds. Just 10 per cent of these calls are for patients with life-threatening conditions. A further 40 per cent are for low acuity conditions. In times of peak demand, such as winter, this places extra pressure on all NSW Ambulance resources. NSW Ambulance don't expect patient demand to change. Ultimately it is the NSW Ambulance responsibility to ensure that they make the #rightcall to get their patients the #rightcare ensuring in the process that they are using their resources in the most appropriate way. The Is Your Urgency an Emergency? campaign educates and empowers the community about the range of treatment pathways available to them.

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