The cost to ride a Winnipeg ambulance, how far will your external coverage go?
WINNIPEG — You’ll make the call for an ambulance at perhaps one of the scariest times in your life, but the cost likely won’t be at the top of your mind.
A ride in an ambulance in Winnipeg sits at $522. A fee that Manitoba Health does not cover. So, if you’re without external health coverage it’s a bill you’ll be footing yourself.
In 2015, the City of Winnipeg said there were 56,224 medical incidents that were an emergency and an ambulance was dispatched. Which means over 56,000 people who were handed that bill at the end of their experience. Some covered by insurance, some not.
“I had no idea it was that expensive because my mom was in B.C. and hers were $80 each. So it was quite a shock to get the bill,” said Bonnie Cheadle.
That’s where external coverage comes in. But, even that can only go so far according to the people paying for it.
69-year-old Pat Mckenna said with multiple health problems for her and her husband, they’ve had to use the ambulance over three times in the past year and have had to use a lot of medication and other services.
“After $25,000 I don’t get anymore coverage and that’s coming very close to me because my medications are quite expensive,” said Pat Mckenna.
She said she will soon have to pay out of her pocket, when her insurance maxes out. Which she expects to be very soon.
“I have less than a thousand dollars in my account for a lifetimes. So, everything will be paid by me in the future,” said Mckenna.
Mckenna said for her husband and her that means possibly cutting back on the food bill so that they can afford the inevitable future ambulance ride or any other medical expenses in the years to come.
This is why the province is taking another opportunity to remind Manitobans, if you don’t have insurance then get it. But, if you do, then double check how far that’ll go for you.
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