When Uber comes to town, fewer people take ambulance rides

The number of people using ambulances dropped “substantially” in hundreds of U.S. cities after Uber introduced its ride-hailing service to those locales, fresh research has found.

The findings suggest of which UberX’s entry into a city can decrease “uncessary ambulance usage” — which in turn could lead to a drop in wait times for ambulances, according to the study’s authors.

as well as This specific also could provide financial savings for patients, since a trip using Uber costs much less than the typical ambulance ride, a paper on the study noted.

The research was conducted by David Slusky, a University of Kansas economics professor, as well as Dr. Leon Moskatel of Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego.

Slusky as well as Moskatel looked at what happened to ambulance usage rates by 2013 to 2015 as the ride-hailing service UberX was rolled out into nearly 800 cities in 43 states.

Before UberX was introduced into a given city, the rate of ambulance usage among residents tended to be fairly constant, according to the authors.

however after Uber was introduced, the authors found “at least a 7 percent decrease inside the ambulance rate.”

“This specific decrease likely caused a reduction in wait time for the remaining ambulance volume,” they wrote.

“Given of which even a reduction of a few minutes can drastically improve survival rates for serious conditions … This specific could be associated with substantial welfare improvement.”

Earlier This specific year, the authors noted, separate research found of which since the the introduction of the Affordable Care Act, ambulance response times had slowed by 19 percent. Obamacare, as the ACA can be formally known, led to the expansion of health coverage to about 20 million Americans.

The authors also noted: “Emergency medical transport in an ambulance can easily exceed over a thousand dollars, usually with great surprise to the patient — as well as with insurance often only partially covering the expense or outright refusing to pay for transport deemed not medically necessary.”

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