Asbel Montes, Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives of Acadian Ambulance Service, has been appointed to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Air Ambulance and Patient Billing Advisory Committee (AAPB Advisory Committee).

U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao recently announced the formation of the AAPB Advisory Committee and appointment of 13 members. The Committee will advise the Secretary about issues relating to air ambulance services and patient billing and will review options to improve the disclosure of charges and fees for air medical services, better inform consumers of insurance options for such services, and protect consumers from balance billing.

The Committee will make recommendations regarding disclosure of charges and fees for air ambulance services and insurance coverage, as well as consumer protection and enforcement authorities of both the DOT and state authorities, and the prevention of balance billing to consumers.

“Acadian Ambulance and Acadian Air Med have been strong proponents of protecting patients from excessive financial burden resulting from emergency air transport and we are honored to have Asbel serve on this important and prestigious committee,” said Acadian Chairman & CEO Richard Zuschlag.

According to the DOT’s announcement, focusing on four main criteria including representation, expertise, balance and willingness to participate, the Secretary appointed representatives from state insurance regulators; health insurance regulators; patient advocacy groups; consumer advocacy groups; physicians specializing in emergency, trauma, cardiac or stroke; various segments of the air ambulance industry. The Secretary also appointed representatives of nurses, managers of employee benefits plans, and the workers’ compensation insurance industry to the AAPB Advisory Committee.

Montes will serve as the representative of air ambulance operators (fixed wing). He is active with the American Ambulance Association and is a highly respected industry leader in cost reporting, compliance and patient advocacy.

See the full text of the Secretary’s announcement here. For more information about the Air Ambulance and Patient Billing Advisory Committee, visit the DOT website at https://www.transportation.gov/airconsumer/AAPB