|Copyright © 2009-2010. MediRide, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
CEO Exposes The Shocking Inside Story!
I'd like to take this opportunity to clear up for you, once and for
all, some common misconceptions, malicious rumors, and
lies that have been promulgated by the uninformed and by
our business competitors. As you can see, I have given you,
the reader, the courtesy of providing you with my real name. I
have no desire to hide behind anonymous screen names as
I'm proud to stand behind my statements. My response here will be lengthy, but if you
going to name names. When you see a linked text, more than likely there's a
document attached. Click it to read the documentation. Here is my story as I've seen
it, and lived it. You can come to your own conclusions based on the evidence.
In the year 2000, I was working for Michigan's largest long-term-care provider,
Tendercare Health Centers, Inc. (Michigan) at their facility in Munising, Michigan. Part
of my job was to facilitate incoming patient admissions from U.P. area hospitals to
our building. Over 85% of our patients were transported to our building by
ambulance. I began having some troubles getting these patients into our building
because the price for transport by ambulance was so expensive. I had a number of
patients unable to be admitted to our building because of the cost for these
ambulance transports. One day, I was discussing this problem with a Discharge
Planner from Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital in Manistique, named Jeanne Dalgord,
and she said to me, "I wish someone would start an ambulance service that people
could afford." Immediately, the light bulb went off, and the MediRide EMS concept
I'd spent a good part of my life working with elderly people, starting when I was just 14
years old when I volunteered to lead a men's group at the Marquette County Medical
Care Facility in Ishpeming. Every Saturday, while my buddies were playing ball, going
to camp, and just being a kid, I was at the nursing home, reading books to the guys,
listening to their stories about World War II, and getting to know them. I learned a lot
about life from those guys, and I'm so thankful for every minute I spent with them.
After graduating from high school, and while attending college, I worked as an aide at
MCMCF, Eastwood Nursing Center, and for Marquette General Home Health. Later in
my career I advanced to the administrative position at Tendercare, where along with
help from the incredible Tendercare staff, we tirelessly labored to turn that facility into
a real home for our elderly residents. I've always had nothing but the utmost respect
and care for seniors, and would do just about anything to make their lives as good as
can possibly be.
Knowing that, you'll see how I jumped at the chance to start a business that would
allow me to work with seniors, and provide them an affordable alternative in
ambulance transportation. At that time in Marquette, there was only one ambulance
(EMS) provider, and that was Marquette General Hospital. I realized rather quickly that
when there's only one provider, that business (and let's be honest, Marquette General
is a business), that single provider can charge its patients (customers) whatever it
wants, as there is no other choice/alternative for them. I truly believe that's exactly
what was going on.
After much investigation, I realized that my business partner, Michelle DeLisle and I
could provide the same, exact service, for much less, and when we transported our
first patient, we did it for 50% less than what Marquette General EMS would've
charged that same patient for the exactly same service!
For the first year and a half of our company's operation, we received multiple requests
from the Discharge Planners at Marquette General to transport their patients bound
for nursing homes & private residences. Every day, we'd go to MGH, at the request of
their staff and transport these people. That was back when the Social Work staff was
permitted to give their patients the option of which ambulance service they'd like to
transport them. The patient asked the price, and almost always chose MediRide EMS
for their transportation services. In fact, at one time Marquette General used to
provide their patients with a form, explaining the ambulance transport options to their
patients and giving them a choice between Marquette General EMS and MediRide,
Inc. EMS. I've attached two letters here where you will see that I'm confirming with Kirk
Matthews, MSW, the Social Services Dept. Director (at the time) that MGH has added
MediRide EMS to their providers list, and then a follow-up asking for him to correct the
spelling of our company name on that list. Letter #1 - April 28, 2003 Letter #2 -
August 09, 2004.
All of a sudden, the calls from Marquette General dropped off to nearly zero. I found
this very strange. I happened to run into one of the MGH Social Workers, Jenny Cihak,
outside of Jack's grocery store on Third Street in Marquette, and I questioned her as
to what was going on. Why weren't they calling any longer. She told me, "we were
told by the brick building (MGH Administrative Office) that we are no longer allowed to
use MediRide and Marquette General EMS is to do all transfers from our building and
unless the patient specifically asks for MediRide, we can't use you." I said, "well, the
patients will still chose our service...we're so much less expensive, even if they're
covered by Medicare or insurance." Then she told me that they're not permitted to
offer the patient a choice. Of course, this was all told to me on condition of anonymity
because Jenny said she was "fearful" she'd "lose her job" if it was discovered she'd
told me this.
It wasn't long until my step-sister's mother was a patient at Marquette General and
was in need of ambulance transportation from MGH to a nursing home. My
step-sister called me, very upset and angry that she asked for MediRide EMS to
transport her mother, and was told by the MGH staff that they had "already set up the
transport with MGH EMS and it was too late" for her to be transported by MediRide
EMS. Of course, this was completely false, as all they'd have to do is call MediRide
and we'd have been right over. It wasn't too late at all, and they knew it. We've been
battling these kinds of games/lies for 10 years. I'm not crying about it, I'm used to it.
This didn't sound very fair, or very ethical to me, so I sent a letter to then MGH CEO
William Nemacheck and copied it to Jill Bruno-Enright, the patient advocate...the
PATIENT ADVOCATE (person who should be advocating for the patient's best
interest) she informed me there was "nothing" she could do about it, and that she
"didn't make hospital policy."
We figured then that we'd advertise the fact that people who were in need of
non-emergency ambulance transports could ASK for MediRide EMS if they were
leaving Marquette General and needed transportation. We still didn't get any requests
for our service from Marquette General patients. Meanwhile, we were doing a large
volume of transports from Bell Hospital in Ishpeming. Patients there were choosing
us over the higher-priced competitor two to one. Of course, Bell staff was still giving
their patients a choice.
After a few years of providing non-emergency ambulance transportation, we invested
hundreds of thousands of dollars into upgrading MediRide, Inc. EMS from a Basic
Life Support Agency to an Advanced Life Support agency. For those of you not up on
the EMS lingo, that means MediRide, Inc. EMS would be providing the highest level of
Emergency Medical Care available in the industry...the exact same level of licensure
and care provided by Marquette General EMS.
This is where the real fun begins. Problems started almost immediately, along with
the beginning of the propaganda, the smear campaign and lies.
Some of the documentation is presented in PDF formate
and requires the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader
For a free copy, click here >>.
Names / Phone numbers of private
citizens or patients have been edited
out to protect privacy.
Cut # 1 - MCCD Dispatcher Lies About "Request"
This audio clip is for a rollover accident at Selma
Road and US 41 in Marquette County. You will hear
all of the calls received by Marquette County Central
Dispatch asking for an ambulance to respond.
Then you will hear the dispatchers paging out the
units. It's important to note that at NO TIME did any
of the callers "request" a Marquette General
ambulance (unit 141). This call should have been
dispatched to MediRide EMS (unit 156), but was
not. At about 5:24 into this recording you will
actually HEAR THE DISPATCHER state that this was
"a request for your ambulance (meaning Marquette
General), by the way." Of course, the audio proves
she was lying. How many times do things like this