The Reading Room

Our latest update on all things imaging

What Medicare's 2018 final rules mean for radiology

by The Imaging Performance Partnership November 9, 2017

Last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released final rules governing hospital outpatient facility and provider payments for calendar year (CY) 2018. Included in the rules are payment and regulatory updates that are important for imaging programs to understand as they consider their strategy and financial outlook for 2018 and beyond.

To help you prepare for changes and ensure future success, we read through the more than 2,500 pages and identified four key takeaways below for imaging leaders and radiologists. For more on how the 2018 Medicare Final Rules affect your imaging strategy, join us for a webconference on December 7.

Register Now

Read more »

Imaging's escalating price problem—and how you can respond

by Lea Halim and Erin Lane October 28, 2017

More and more, patients call to request price estimates. Referring providers question the cost of your facility's imaging services. Payers steer patients to lower cost competitors.

The market may be demanding lower-priced imaging, but lower prices without increased volumes means less revenue. And the last thing imaging programs need is less revenue. So for many, imaging prices stay high. Test

But new payer dynamics, like Anthem's site-of-service policy and Medicare's site-neutral payments, are shaking up the outpatient imaging market and prompting leaders to reconsider their pricing strategies.

Read more »

Struggling with no-shows in radiology? Here's what you should do about it.

by Lea Halim and Catherine Kosse October 16, 2017

No-show visits (NSVs) are a constant challenge for imaging departments, resulting in financial losses and delays to patient care. Programs have long tried to track no-show trends, but what if you could accurately predict skipped appointments with existing data?

Read more »

How workload balancing significantly reduces ED report turnaround times

by Lea Halim and Ty Aderhold October 3, 2017

One of the most common metrics used by imaging programs is report turnaround time: the time from when an exam is ready for a radiologist to read to the final report sign-off.

While report turnaround time is an important metric to track (and benchmark) across all care settings, it is particularly important in the ED, where additional minutes can have a major impact on patient care. And when minutes matter, it is important to evaluate every aspect of workflow that contributes to this turnaround time.

Read more »

Anthem will deny some hospital-based imaging: What you need to know

by Lea Halim and Erin Lane September 18, 2017

Anthem, the second largest insurance company in the United States, recently announced that it will no longer pay for certain advanced imaging services at hospital-based facilities. Anthem's leadership cited the substantial price variation between imaging services performed at hospitals versus freestanding sites as justification for the change.

This marks the latest instance of hospital-based imaging facilities being targeted as a source of unnecessarily high costs. Medicare has been rolling out a site-neutral payment policy and payers have been steering patients to lower cost sites for nearly a decade—although Anthem's latest move takes steerage to a new level.

Register for our Dec. 7 webconference on the latest imaging trends

Since Anthem announced this policy, our researchers have received many questions from members. Read on for answers to your top questions, as well as our take on how programs can respond.

Read more »

3 takeaways for imaging leaders from the 2017 ACR workforce survey

by Lea Halim and Ty Aderhold September 5, 2017

Continued growth of national radiology groups; widespread health system consolidation; predictions of a physician shortage on the horizon: These are just a few of the forces impacting the radiologist workforce.

Read more »

The CR to DR transition: Less than halfway there

Lea Halim August 23, 2017

On January 1, 2018, CMS will begin assessing a penalty of 7% on technical reimbursement for X-ray exams conducted on computed radiography (CR) equipment—and in 2023, the penalty will rise to 10%.

This is a significant revenue impact that requires a strategic response from imaging departments, outpatient imaging centers, and imaging equipment vendors.

Read more »

What Medicare's 2018 payment proposals would mean for radiology

by Lea Halim, Ty Aderhold, and Erin Lane August 4, 2017

Last month, CMS released proposed rules governing hospital outpatient facility and provider payments for calendar year 2018. The rules cover payment updates, coding changes, and details for Medicare policies regarding clinical decision support and site-neutral payments—all of which directly impact imaging programs.

Our team read through the more than 1,400 pages of proposed rules and identified six key takeaways for imaging leaders and radiologists.

Read more »