El Cajon Hires Consulting Firm To Analyze Emergency Services Spending
The El Cajon City Council voted 4-0 to hire consulting firm Health Analytics to study how the city can reduce emergency medical services costs after the city spent almost $600,000 last year to cover unexpected costs related to transporting people to hospitals, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports (Neely, San Diego Union-Tribune, 4/29). In February, the city council voted to take about $900,000 from its reserve account to subsidize its emergency medical services budget for the current year. In 2003, El Cajon spent an average of $494 per person for ambulance transportation costs, but average payments from Medicare, Medi-Cal, private insurers and people who pay their own medical expenses amounted to about $402 per person. City officials anticipate average costs per person will be about $528 this year, while they say payments from all sources will average about $389 per person (California Healthline, 2/13). City Finance Director Michael Shelton said the firm is expected to issue a complete report this summer. The contract is valued at $50,000 (San Diego Union-Tribune, 4/29).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.