INDIANAPOLIS – This week, Senate Bill (SB) 498, authored by State Senator Karen Tallian (D-Ogden Dunes), passed out of the Indiana House of Representatives unanimously. SB 498 would allow the creation of a mobile integrated healthcare program. Sen. Tallian had the following comments on the passage of her bill:

“Paramedics repeatedly service patients whom they call ‘frequent fliers’ – Hoosiers whose long-term illnesses force them to seek ambulance services for simple medical needs and treatments. Medics have the knowledge and capability to treat these Hoosiers in their own homes for routine care, but they currently cannot bill Medicaid for these services. Currently, emergency medical service (EMS) providers can only bill Medicaid for costly emergency transport services.

“My proposal allows certain EMS providers to be reimbursed for covered services that they provide to a Medicaid recipient. In consultation with the State Departments of Health and Homeland Security, the EMS Commission can develop a community paramedicine program. The Commission will also be able to establish and administer grants for cities and towns who start up such a program.

“This bill had broad support in both chambers of the General Assembly. I believe this is an active step in providing more reliable health care, while saving Medicaid dollars. It ensures that no Hoosier falls through the cracks.”

There were no House amendments to SB 498, so the bill now moves directly to the governor’s desk for final consideration.