BILLING FAQs

Can EMS reduce the bill?

As a governmental agency, ATCEMS is not able to adjust an outstanding balance and the State Constitution* prohibits us from forgiving any debts that are owed.

The Texas Constitution: Article 3-Legislative Department, Section 55 – Release or extinguishments of indebtedness to State, County, Subdivision, or Municipal Corporation. The Legislature shall have no power to release or extinguish, or to authorize the releasing or extinguishing, in whole or in part, the indebtedness, liability or obligation of any corporation or individual, to this State or to any county or defined subdivision thereof, or other municipal corporation therein, except delinquent taxes which have been due for a period of at least ten years. (Amended Nov. 8, 1932).

Can I make a payment online?

We accept both recurring and single credit card payments through the PayConnexion Online Payment portal here.

Do I have to register in order to make an online payment?

No, you may click the “Pay Without Registering” button located at the bottom of the portal to proceed with your single payment. However, in order to setup recurring payments you must be registered.

How can I check the status of my online payment?

Click the “Payment Inquiry” button located on the payment portal. Enter the confirmation number emailed to you and your email address you received the confirmation number from, then click submit. A summary of your payment will populate on the screen.

Do you accept payment plans?

Yes, we will work with you to set up a payment plan that best meets your needs. We do recommend a minimum monthly payment of $10.

Does EMS bill the person that caused the accident if it wasn't the patient's fault?

No, EMS only bills the person that used the service.

How much will my insurance pay?

Insurance companies pay claims based on the type of coverage each individual policy provides. To determine this you must read the contract you have with your insurance company.

Medicare and Medicaid will absolutely not pay if you are not transported to a hospital. Medicare and Medicaid will also not pay if you are transported and they do not consider the reason for transport to the hospital as life or limb threatening. Austin-Travis County EMS does balance bill for any unpaid amount not received from the insurance company.

I did not call EMS why am I receiving a bill?

If you were provided a service that has a fee you will be billed.

You have the right to refuse treatment and transport.

If you were injured on the job what information do we need to file the claim?

We need the name of the employer and their physical business address and the name of their worker's compensation carrier. We also need the worker’s compensation insurance claims’ address and the claim number associated.

If you were involved in an automobile accident, what insurance information do you need to provide?

Auto insurance, if you have personal injury protection (PIP) would be the primary insurance to file. If there is no PIP then submit your medical insurance information.

The patient has passed away, what do I do with the bill?

If the patient has a surviving spouse the spouse is responsible for the bill. If the patient had insurance we will file the claim and balance bill the surviving spouse. If the patient is not survived by a spouse the executor of the estate is responsible for ensuring payment. If there is no estate, no insurance and no spouse the account is put on an indefinite hold. We must receive documentation that there is no means to pay the account and a copy of the death certificate.

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept payments online credit card payments here. We also accept payments made by cash, check, money order and most credit cards: Master Card, Visa, American Express and Discovery. Contact our office between the hours of 9:00am- 4:30pm at (512) 972-7210 to setup recurring payments over the phone.

What is the cost of being treated and/or transported by EMS?

Cost is based on the type of service that was provided, either Advanced Life Support or Basic Life Support. There is also a difference if the patient was transported or not. 

Cost can be as low as $104.00 for an aid at scene to a minimum of $831.00 for a Basic Life Support transport only one mile. Fees are approved by the City Council.

Where can I find the fees for EMS service?

Fees can be found here.

Where do I send my payments?

You may mail your payments to: Austin-Travis County EMS, Attn: Billing Office, P.O. Box 1088, Austin, TX 78767. You can also bring payment into our office at the Rebekah Baines Johnson (RBJ) Health Center: 15 Waller, 2nd Floor, Austin, TX 78702. When mailing in your payment please include your run number listed on the billing invoice. Do NOT send cash through the mail.

Why am I getting a bill when my insurance paid?

Austin-Travis County EMS balance bills for all non-Medicare, Tricare, VA, Medicaid and Worker's Compensation insurers. We do not have contracts with private insurance companies therefore we do not waive any unpaid portion of the bill.

Why am I receiving a bill when I gave my insurance to the paramedic?

The paramedics' number one priority is the treatment and care of the patient. Sometimes complete insurance information is not documented.

Why didn't the paramedic tell me how much it is going to cost?

The primary concern of the crew is the treatment and care of the patient.

Why is there a charge when I pay City taxes?

The cost to operate Austin-Travis County EMS is funded by the City of Austin and Travis County taxpayers, in addition to fees which are passed on to the patients who use our services.

ATCEMS takes all 911 calls seriously, and therefore when anyone initiates a call to 911 the emergency system is activated to dispatch a "unit" to the patient. This takes an ambulance unit "out of service" to respond to any other 911 calls, meaning they cannot go on any other emergency calls until they are "cleared" with the patient and with 911 dispatch. Therefore, that unit is being dispatched solely for the patient's care and safety; that unit thus became unavailable to any other calls. There is a cost for the activation of the emergency system, the dispatching of a unit and the medical assistance provided to a patient.

Will EMS file a claim with the insurance company?

As a courtesy, EMS will file the claim if complete insurance information and a signature to pay the provider are received. EMS has 90 days from the date of service to file the claim to private insurance companies and Medicaid. If the insurance information is not received in enough time to allow for timely filing the patient will have to file the claim themselves.

Can I get a copy of the medical records?

The patient or an authorized representative of the patient may request for medical records by completing the Patient Medical Record Request form. The request must include a copy of the requestors’ picture ID. You may contact our office to obtain this form via email, fax, or mail.

Email:   EMSMedicalRecords@austintexas.gov

Fax:        (512) 482-9407

Mail:     Austin-Travis County EMS

              Attn: Medical Records Office

              P.O. Box 1088

              Austin, TX 78767

There is a 2 business day turnaround time for processing a request and there is a $10.00 fee that must be paid prior to the release of the medical records. You may authorize for the records to be mailed, emailed, faxed, or you may pick the records up at our office.

MEDICAL RECORDS FAQs

How does an Attorney or Record Company get a copy of a medical record and billing statement?

Below are the requirements for a medical record and billing statement request to be processed for an attorney or record company:

Current authorization written on the firm’s letter head (must be within 6 months or state on the authorization when it expires), made out to Austin-Travis County EMS, signed and dated by the patient (patient's representative, if the patient is deceased or a minor).

There is a 10 business day turnaround time for processing a request and the fee that must be paid prior to the release of the records.

What is the fee for medical records?

The fee for medical records is based on your date of service, prior to March 1, 2009 the fee is $2.50 per page after March 1, 2009 there is a $10 flat fee per account. The record is normally 8 pages however, the number of pages may fluctuate based on the length of the record.

$1.00 itemized statement

$5.00 EKG print out

$20.00 per Affidavit

$20.00 per Deposition

$25.00 Rush service

$20.00 Archive retrieval fee

What is considered a Rush request?

Any record that must be received within 5 business days of request. There is an additional fee of $25.00 for rushed processing.

Do I need to provide pre-payment for records?

Pre-payments are not accepted prior to the request being processed. You must receive an invoice prior to remitting payment to our office. Pre-payments received prior to the processing of an invoice will be returned to the requestor without being processed. However, payment in full is required in order to release the records.

What if I need to cancel a request? 

We ask that you call or email us as soon as possible, if we do not receive notice before the invoice is sent to your office the requester is responsible for the processing charges.

Do you accept Letters of Protection?

No, we are not obligated to accept Letters of Protection and can pursue regular collection efforts even though there is litigation pending between the patient and another party.

How long are medical records kept?

Medical records are kept on adults for 7 years from the date of service. Medical records for minors are kept until the minor becomes 21 years of age and/or 7 years, whichever is the lesser amount of time.

Where do I send my medical record requests?

You may send your requests via email, fax, or mail to the attention of the Medical Records Office.

Email:   EMSMedicalRecords@austintexas.gov

Fax:        (512) 482-9407

Mail:     Austin-Travis County EMS

Attn: Medical Records Office

P.O. Box 1088

Austin, TX 78767

How do I pay medical record request?

We offer an online payment solution here. You may also call our office between the hours of 9:00am- 4:30pm to make credit card payments over the phone. We also accept checks, money orders and most credit cards; Master Card, Visa, American Express and Discovery which can be mailed.

Mail:     Austin-Travis County EMS

              Attn: Medical Records Office

              P.O. Box 1088

              Austin, TX 78767

                Phone: (512) 972-7210