HOUSTON - The Houston Fire Department is looking to recoup some of its EMS costs by increasing how much it bills you or your insurance company after you call 911.
According to Chief Samuel Pena, costs of running ambulances have gone up 70 percent since they last raised their fees six years ago and a city study proposed increasing their fees to adjust for inflation and higher drug costs.
Another proposal would let the city bill insurance companies for cases in which a cardiac patient dies before he or she is transported to the hospital or for "lift assists" when people call for help when they've fallen or need help adjusting in a bed.
"The fee increase was based on a study done by the finance department with the city of Houston and what it takes and what it costs for us to deliver that service. We're asking for that adjustment to be able to recoup some of those costs." said Chief Pena.
They would also ask for $175 in each case when people call for treatment at a scene, then refuse to go to the hospital.