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Delayed Payments Hurt Illinois Ambulance Services

When an ambulance is dispatched in Illinois to help the victim of a car crash, shooting or heart attack, the paramedics who arrive don’t ask — and are prohibited by law from considering — whether that person has a certain kind of health insurance or no coverage at all.

Ambulance services can’t discriminate when it comes to relieving patients’ suffering. But the state’s ongoing backlog of bills is inflicting financial pain on ambulance providers if those patients are covered by Illinois’ Medicaid program or the group health-insurance program for state employees, retirees and dependents.

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