Emergency medical calls account for a large percentage of the total number of emergency services calls in the City. For example, in 2016, there were over 5,000 EMS incidents in the City and 54% of Charlottesville Fire Department responses were for Emergency Medical Service (EMS) incidents. As the need for emergency medical services continues to grow, the City, like many other localities, is seeking ways to fund these services without relying solely on local tax revenue or donations to local volunteer agencies. EMS Cost Recovery permits localities to recover system costs from those individuals who benefit directly from EMS delivery, including non-City residents, with the vast majority of the costs collected from Medicare, Medicaid and insurance companies.
The EMS Cost Recovery program will be utilized to support the volunteers at the Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad (CARS), will provide a funding stream to support additional Charlottesville firefighters to staff ambulances in the City, and will support the acquisition and deployment of sophisticated EMS equipment.