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Ambulance Providers Get Medicare Boost

NEW YORK -- The Senate has approved by a veto-proof margin a bill that will increase Medicare payments to ambulance providers in rural areas by 3 percent and in urban areas by 2 percent for 18 months.

Ambulance providers in the Hudson Valley would get another $2.2 million in payments in 2008 and 2009, while ambulance providers statewide stand to get another $6.2 million.

"This is great news for upstate New Yorkers who place their lives in the hands of ambulance companies that are so starved of funding they have struggled to keep pace with basic equipment upgrades," said U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who authored the legislation. "Now, with a veto-proof majority, we are well on our way to making sure our local ambulances are given the swift boost they need to effectively save lives."

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