Here are some frequently asked questions with answers about the AirMedCare Network Membership program:
What is the benefit of membership to you?
Although you do not have to be a member to be transported, membership offers several important benefits:
First, AirMedCare Network will work on your behalf with your benefits
provider to secure payment for your flight, with any uncovered amounts considered to be fully prepaid. As
such, members who are transported by an AirMedCare Network affiliated company will not receive a bill for the
flight. Importantly, your membership is valid in all of our service areas so you are covered while
traveling in those areas.
Second, becoming an AirMedCare Network member is a good way to support the health care needs of your local
community. Our membership base - the largest of its kind in the United States - helps us operate in rural
areas where having a quick response time to critical medical situations can save lives. Approximately 90%
of our patient transports originate from a super rural or rural zip code as defined by the Centers for
Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). If it weren't for our members, we would be challenged to provide this
lifesaving service in many of these outlying communities.
How can a membership be so inexpensive and yet still be able to cover the costs
of the flights?
An individual's membership fee covers only a small fraction of the cost of a flight.
Our membership support helps subsidize our program, but our primary revenue is derived
from our transports, the vast majority of which are non-members.
What is included in my membership?
Members are entitled to transport by a participating partner of the AirMedCare Network's
helicopter to the closest appropriate medical facility for medical conditions deemed
by an attending medical professional to be "life or limb" threatening, or that could
lead to permanent disability.
Can I cover all of my family on the membership?
With a household membership, all individuals who reside at your residence can be
covered by the membership. College students can be covered by the household membership
if their primary address is the same as your residence.
Is there a limit to the number of flights a member can have in a year?
There is no limit to the number of flights a member may take in a year. Each flight
is handled the same way and must be medically necessary.
If I am a member and end up being transported by a ground ambulance or another air
ambulance service, who is responsible for the bill?
If a participating partner of the AirMedCare Network does not transport you, you
will be responsible for payment of the bill. Our membership program only covers
flights by this network.
Is a membership considered insurance?
No. AirMedCare Network is not an insurance company. An AirMedCare Network membership is not an
insurance policy and cannot be considered as secondary insurance coverage or as supplemental
coverage to any insurance policy. Membership provides prepaid protection against covered
AirMedCare Network air ambulance transportation costs that exceed a member's health insurance
or medical benefits.
Does my primary insurance cover the cost of a flight? If so, how much?
This answer varies, with each insurance company offering different plans and coverage.
It is up to your individual insurance company as to whether they will cover the
cost of a flight, as well as to the amount of economic burden placed on the patient
via a co-pay or deductible. We recommend that you contact your insurance company
directly to obtain detailed coverage information.
My insurance company says they will cover 100% so why do I need this membership?
Most insurance companies will pay 100% of what they deem an allowable amount for
air ambulance, which does not necessarily mean that the total cost of the flight
will be covered. Additionally, people frequently change insurance companies and
plan designs. You will want to check with your individual insurance company to find
out exactly how much they will cover in the case of an air ambulance transport.
If I have Medicaid, do I need a membership?
No. Some state laws prohibit Medicaid beneficiaries from being offered membership
or accepted into membership programs. As part of our application process, members
certify to us that they are not Medicaid beneficiaries.
If I have Medicare and a supplement policy, do I need a membership?
This answer varies, depending upon the nature of your transport and your supplemental
insurance provider. In many cases, Medicare and the supplemental insurance coverage
should pay for the cost of air ambulance transport if it is medically necessary
and if Medicare believes you were taken to the closest appropriate hospital. We
have seen cases where the supplemental insurance provider does not cover a remaining
balance after Medicare has paid its portion. Many seniors have said they want a
membership even if they have complete coverage, in the event that their insurance
coverage changes in the future or if the claim is denied.
If I have a medical emergency, who do I call?
Call your local 911 service.
The 911 dispatchers are trained to get specific information about the medical emergency
from the caller and determine what type of medical transportation best fits the
situation, so the best option is always to call the local 911 service first. The
local service is more familiar with your location, as well as the availability of
the local emergency resources.
How would emergency personnel know that I am a member?
You may make the 911/ground ambulance service aware that you are a member so that
in the event they plan to request an air ambulance, they know your preference. As
a member, you will receive with your membership an identification card and decals
for your vehicle and front door. All of these items allow emergency personnel to
identify that you are a member.
Who determines if and when I will be flown?
If your medical emergency meets certain criteria, such as a heart attack, stroke
or a traumatic injury and the 911 dispatcher determines you would benefit from air
medical transport, they will dispatch an air ambulance to your emergency, as well
as a ground ambulance.