Case Management

Sneak peek: Interstate transfers create financial, logistical challenges

Case Management Weekly, February 24, 2010

One of the biggest challenges of executing an interstate transfer is the cost, says Matt Boettcher, LCSW, director of case management at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix.

“Nine times out of 10, Medicaid of another state is not going to pay the transport cost to get the patient back,” says Boettcher.

Fighting Medicaid on this issue ultimately will cost the facility, he says. While the transferring facility argues with the Medicaid office, the unfunded patient remains in the hospital, likely costing the facility the same amount it would have cost to transfer the patient. The patient also is taking a bed away from a funded patient who needs one.

Facilities with a significant number of interstate transfers can try to limit the cost by establishing relationships with multiple air ambulance companies. If multiple companies value the business, a facility can compare prices and typically negotiate a lower rate, says Boettcher.

Check out the March 2010 issue of Case Management Monthly to learn more. You also can discover the benefits of becoming a Case Management Monthly subscriber.

Most Popular