PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- A Pasadena mother is left having to pay for an expensive bill after she called an ambulance for her injured child.
Courtney Weil's daughter was rushed to a hospital after she was injured at Singer Park in Pasadena. Weil thought her insurance would cover the cost, but that's not the case.
"I have been left with almost a $3,300 bill," Weil said.
The ambulance took her daughter to USC in downtown Los Angeles. With mileage, the bill came out to $3,287. She says the insurance will only pay part of it.
"That amount is $559; that's what they'll pay for insurance," Weil explained. "They've told Pasadena that. They're saying that they've given me my $559 credit toward my daughter's deductible."
"It has nothing to do with us not accepting their insurance," Pasadena Fire Chief Chad Augustin said. "This person chose to purchase insurance with a high-dollar deductible."
As it turns out, the city of Pasadena has an ambulance subscription program. For $89 a year per household, it covers any ambulance cost not covered by insurance. It started at the beginning of the year. It would have covered what insurance didn't pay.
Weil says she had no idea this existed.
"I would sign up for it. If I'd known it was available for $89 in Pasadena I would've signed my family up for it," Weil said.
The chief says the city tried to get the word out that this subscription program is available, but he wonders if they didn't do a good enough job. He claims not a lot of people have signed up so far.
"It's very small. We're averaging about 10 to 15 people a month registering for it, and that's been pretty consistent since we started," Augustin said. "Not that I would expect our entire community to enroll, but what I would like to see is at least those numbers not go down."
Weil said she'll keep trying to negotiate with the city, but since she doesn't want her credit to be ruined, eventually she might have to pay the bill.
"The best they will do is set up a payment plan for you, but they will not negotiate the fee whatsoever," Weil said.
Cities such as Santa Ana, Burbank and others also offer an EMS subscription service. You can check with your city to see if it offers a similar plan.