With $1.8 million in unpaid ambulances bills, Mississippi city seeks outside help with collecting money

Published 6:55 am Monday, August 16, 2021

A city in Mississippi has hired a firm to collect more than $1.8 million in ambulance bills unpaid since as early as 2013.

The Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted Tuesday to retain Franklin Collection Services Inc. of Tupelo to reduce or eliminate the backlog, The Vicksburg Post reported.

The city’s fire department has run emergency medical service in Vicksburg since 1969, because the local ambulance company went out of business. It also sends ambulances to Warren County residents under an agreement with the county’s board of supervisors.

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Health Care Consultants Inc. handles billing but does not have a mechanism to collect past-due bills, said City Attorney Nancy Thomas.

The company averages 150 bills a month at $625 for emergency runs and $325 for non-emergency calls, Health Care Consultants president Bill Fulcher said. He said patients’ insurance companies are billed, as are uninsured patients.