The low cost of Uber and Lyft rides have transformed the ride-sharing industry and virtually wiped taxis out of existence. Are ambulances next? It seems that more and more people are relying on alternate ways to travel to the hospital, but is it a good idea? The short answer is that it depends.
No matter how you arrive at the hospital, you should always contact a Colorado personal injury attorney after an accident. You might be entitled to financial compensation for your damages, and it may be hard to prove your case without expert assistance.
Why Do People Use Uber or Lyft to Go to the Hospital?
An ambulance ride can cost more than $1,000, so it’s no surprise that some people choose Uber or Lyft, which both have an average ride cost of $50, to take them to the hospital. Depending on where you live, you likely have an Uber or Lyft driver moments away from your location, whereas an ambulance can take up to 15 minutes to arrive.
Why You Should Call an Ambulance
For starters, rideshare drivers who double as EMTs are hard to come by. Just imagine you’re a driver and someone who is profusely bleeding comes into your car requesting a trip to the nearest hospital. You’d likely be overwhelmed and may even panic at the sight of the injury and the urgency of the situation. EMTs, on the other hand, know how to handle stress and remain calm. Similarly, they can perform life-saving procedures en route to the hospital.
You should also remember that ambulances have lights and sirens the driver can use to stop traffic and arrive at the hospital sooner. Uber drivers do not have such equipment and must obey all traffic laws. If you happen to hit every red light on your way to the hospital, there’s nothing your driver can do to save time.
Another consideration is that, depending on several factors, Uber and Lyft drivers may carry about 100 passengers during a typical shift. If you’re feeling extremely ill, you might not want to risk the potential of infecting the driver and future passengers.
Is There Ever a Good Time to Take an Uber to the Hospital?
While there are still risks with taking an Uber or Lyft to the hospital, it might be a better option in limited circumstances. Hospitals have a small number of ambulances to dispatch in some towns, so rides should only be used in a true emergency. Experts say that if you don’t think an extra 10 to 15 minutes will make a huge difference in the outcome of your care, you should be safe taking an alternative form of transportation.
Keep in mind that Ubers and Lyfts do not train to drive people to the hospital when they need urgent medical care. If you are having trouble breathing, bleeding, think you may be bleeding internally, or are pregnant and in labor, call for an ambulance. Ultimately, if you need care after a crash that was not your fault, your ambulance ride may be included in the compensation you may be entitled to receive.
Does Insurance Cover Ambulance Rides?
For the most part, insurance will cover the cost of an ambulance ride when they deem it to be “medically necessary.” In this case, insurers will consider the price in a similar manner as they do for other expenses, such as medical bills and physical therapy.
Remember that insurance representatives will do everything in their power to deny your claim and pay you less than what is needed to cover costs, so it’s in your best interest to hire a personal injury lawyer when you face exorbitant medical fees after a crash.
Reach Out to the Mintz Law Firm after a Personal Injury
If your injuries result from someone else’s negligence, you should not have to worry about any accident-related expenses, including the cost of an ambulance. The personal injury attorneys at the Mintz Law Firm are dedicated to fighting for victims of car accidents, work-related injuries, and slip and fall accidents.
For more than 35 years, Attorney David J. Mintz, the founder of Mintz Law Firm, has represented injured people throughout Colorado and the entire country. His skilled team of attorneys has over 150 years of combined experience and knows the ins and outs of personal injury law. We will work for you to receive the compensation needed to cover all accident-related expenses.
Call (303) 462-2999 or complete our contact form to schedule a free consultation.