CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WBOY) — Ambulance companies in West Virginia will see a 10% increase in reimbursements from the state, the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources’ (DHHR) Bureau for Medical Services announced Wednesday.

The change for ground ambulance services will provide more than 200 ambulance providers in the state with $11.8 million in additional reimbursements per year and will make West Virginia’s rate equal to Medicare’s.

The rate is effective Nov. 16 and retroactively beginning July 1, 2022, according to the release from the DHHR.

Bill J. Crouch, DHHR Cabinet Secretary said that the funding is “critical” for local ambulance services, especially in rural West Virginia.

“We have so much gratitude for West Virginia’s ambulance and emergency medical services workers, especially during the last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting stress on the state’s health care system,” Crouch said.

He continued, “I am proud to make this announcement today because I know how much it will mean for all our EMS workers, and all the West Virginians who rely on them to respond when they’re needed most.”

Crouch also thanked Gov. Jim Justice for his support of the amendment.