The Reading Room

Our latest update on all things imaging

CMS proposes to expand site-neutral payments. Here's how that affects imaging

by Erin Lane, Catherine Kosse, and Ty Aderhold August 6, 2018

In 2017, CMS implemented a site-neutral payment provision to reduce payment discrepancies between services performed at hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) and provider-based sites, e.g. physician offices and freestanding clinics. The policy mandates that newer off-campus HOPDs receive reimbursement at a site-specific Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) rate. Currently, this rate equals 40% of the hospital rate.

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What Medicare's 2019 proposed rule means for imaging CDS

by Erin Lane and Catherine Kosse July 24, 2018

Editor's note: This story was updated on August 21, 2018.

Earlier this month, CMS released the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) and Quality Payment Program (QPP) proposals for calendar year 2019. For imaging, many of the biggest updates concern the imaging clinical decision support (CDS) mandate, also known as the Medicare Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) Program.

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Only 50% of radiology employees always report safety concerns. Here's why—and 3 ways to do better.

by Miriam Sznycer-Taub and Ty Aderhold July 17, 2018

Staff reporting of safety concerns is critical to maintaining an imaging department that is safe for patients and employees. Frontline imaging staff are often in the best position to identify potential safety issues—but how often do they report these concerns?

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What UVA's experience reveals about the value of CDS

by Erin Lane and Catherine Kosse June 19, 2018

Clinical decision support (CDS) is a tool that aims to increase appropriateness and decrease unnecessary utilization. Although the Medicare Appropriate Use Criteria Program, which mandates consultation of appropriate use criteria (AUC) via electronic CDS for advanced imaging orders, doesn't begin until 2020, many organizations have moved forward with implementation in order to experience the benefits of CDS.

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Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter: How to showcase your imaging program on social media

by Miriam Sznycer-Taub and Emily Snow June 5, 2018

In an increasingly consumer-driven health care environment, online searches play a significant role in patient research. According to Google's extensive study of online consumer patterns, 52% of patients use health information sites, 26% read online consumer reviews, and 83% consult hospital websites.  However, another study from the American Hospital Association showed that the results of online searches were not always successful in influencing patients' decisions.

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Want higher quality radiology reports? Consider disease-specific templates.

by Miriam Sznycer-Taub and Ty Aderhold May 22, 2018

Structured report templates, while not new to radiology, have been growing in popularity in recent years. These templates provide a standardized format and layout—differing based on exam type—that guide the radiologist through the read and generate clear, consistent reports for referring providers.

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Lung screening programs are underutilized. Learn three new ways to differentiate your program.

by Miriam Sznycer-Taub and Catherine Kosse May 8, 2018

Lung cancer has the highest cancer mortality among men and women in the United States, but a recent study shows that only 3.9% of qualified patients undergo the recommended annual screening exams.

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More Medicare patients with implanted devices can now receive MRIs. Here's how to prepare.

Miriam Sznycer-Taub April 24, 2018

Medicare patients with implanted cardiac devices will now be covered for MRIs. CMS announced this change last week, marking a departure from previous coverage decisions. Prior to this announcement, patients with devices including pacemakers and cardioverter defibrillators were only covered for MRIs as part of a clinical trial—unless their device was specifically approved by the FDA as MRI-compatible.

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