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  1. #1

    Default Billed for Ambulance Trip I Tried to Refuse

    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: South Dakota

    Okay, so I was in a motorcycle accident a month and a half ago or so(my fault, no one else involved). Someone called 911 I guess and the police and an ambulance came. I was on the phone with my wife when the ambulance arrived telling her to come and get me so we could go to the ER. I had an obviously broken left arm, but no other injuries besides a couple small spots of road rash.

    I told the EMT not to take me to the hospital that my wife was on her way to get me. I never lost consciousness was lucid and had no back or neck injuries. The EMT ignored my statements telling me I needed to go to the hospital and strapped me to a backboard and put a C collar on me. I couldn't resist because I was in no condition to do so.

    I received a bill from them for almost $900 not 6 days after the accident and also received a phone call. I talked to one of their collectors who told me if I wanted to refuse the ride I would have had to have signed a waiver. I was never told this by their driver or EMT, and I don't know how I could be expected to know about that without them telling me. If they had offered the waiver I would have signed.

    I'm told by a friend who is a former EMT that if you're transported by ambulance in South Dakota against your will that they can be charged with assault.

    So I guess my questions are: Is this true?(re: charging them with assault) and what should I do about it?

    Thanks for your help.

    PS: I'm not sure this is in the right forum, if not would a moderator please put it in the right one. thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    supratentorial region
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    818

    Default Re: Billed for Ambulance Trip I Tried to Refuse

    Quote Quoting goingtoscotland
    View Post
    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: South Dakota

    Okay, so I was in a motorcycle accident a month and a half ago or so(my fault, no one else involved). Someone called 911 I guess and the police and an ambulance came. I was on the phone with my wife when the ambulance arrived telling her to come and get me so we could go to the ER. I had an obviously broken left arm, but no other injuries besides a couple small spots of road rash.

    I told the EMT not to take me to the hospital that my wife was on her way to get me. I never lost consciousness was lucid and had no back or neck injuries. The EMT ignored my statements telling me I needed to go to the hospital and strapped me to a backboard and put a C collar on me. I couldn't resist because I was in no condition to do so.

    I received a bill from them for almost $900 not 6 days after the accident and also received a phone call. I talked to one of their collectors who told me if I wanted to refuse the ride I would have had to have signed a waiver. I was never told this by their driver or EMT, and I don't know how I could be expected to know about that without them telling me. If they had offered the waiver I would have signed.

    I'm told by a friend who is a former EMT that if you're transported by ambulance in South Dakota against your will that they can be charged with assault.

    So I guess my questions are: Is this true?(re: charging them with assault) and what should I do about it?

    Thanks for your help.

    PS: I'm not sure this is in the right forum, if not would a moderator please put it in the right one. thank you.

    From the bolded statements, I'd say the EMT made a correct judgement call to transport you to the hospital.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Billed for Ambulance Trip I Tried to Refuse

    Quote Quoting lealea1005
    View Post
    From the bolded statements, I'd say the EMT made a correct judgement call to transport you to the hospital.
    By "i was in no condition to do so" I meant i wouldn't have stood a chance in a physical altercation with a man without a broken arm. That doesn't mean I need an ambulance especially considering I was walking around, had removed my helmet, jacket and gloves before they'd gotten there and had also made a phone call to my wife. I could've driven myself there if I had wanted to. And since when do people call for an ambulance when they break their arm?

    I also neglected to mention that they didn't even operate on my arm until nearly 24 hours later and I didn't require any hospitalization. The doctor had an x-ray taken and said "you're going to need surgery, come back tomorrow."

    They also didn't do anything but administer fluids. Didn't even use their lights or siren or run a stop light once.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    853

    Default Re: Billed for Ambulance Trip I Tried to Refuse

    There are certain circumstances where you can be treated and transported against your will. Alcohol intoxication, head trauma, and certain other conditions allow the EMT or Paramedic to rule that you are not competent to understand the medical consequences of refusing medical care, and therefore the law not only allows the EMT to treat you against your will, but requires him to do so. In such a case, you would be responsible for the bill.

    Without knowing the specifics, I cannot begin to tell you what should have taken place, but a good place to start is by going to the office that the EMT works for and obtaining a copy of the run report. If there was no suspected mental incapacity, a broken arm in and of itself is not a valid reason for such a treatment decision. That report should detail the reason why you were transported. Heck, you may have even signed the consent for transport.

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