20 July 2018
Ambulance Victoria has today ceased using Triple Zero (000) caller numbers as part of its debt collection process.
Ambulance Victoria has directed its two debt collection agencies to immediately cease using Triple Zero caller numbers to contact people. Ambulance Victoria will no longer access Triple Zero caller numbers for billing purposes.
Chief Executive Officer, Associate Professor Tony Walker, said that people’s concern over this practice in the last 24 hours had highlighted this as an issue that needed to be looked at more closely.
“I want to reassure the community that if they dial Triple Zero (000) today, they can be absolutely confident that their number will not be accessed by us or passed to a third party for the purpose of billing,” Mr Walker said.
In addition, Ambulance Victoria will commission an independent review of its debt recovery and management processes.
“Through this process change, the community can be confident that they will never receive an invoice for assisting someone else in need.”
Ambulance Victoria is established to provide emergency health care for the Victorian community. There are a number of ways that the cost of this healthcare is covered including through Ambulance Victoria membership, private health insurance or by concession entitlements such as a pension or healthcare card.
If patients are not covered in these ways, the costs need to be recovered through a fee for service.
Ambulance Victoria assists people to identify government concessions that they may be eligible for and can develop flexible payment arrangements to suit individual patient circumstances under its financial hardship policy.
People who believe they have been followed up by one of our debt collection agencies in error, or have another account enquiry, can contact 1800 990 029. (8.30am – 5.00pm Mon-Fri)