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Radiologists should understand the importance of using certified electronic health record (EHR) technology—now more than ever with the opening of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA)’s first reporting period.

As research director of a policy think tank dedicated to medical imaging, I’m frequently asked how radiologists—and their practices—will fit into the broader healthcare landscape once the current tumultuous healthcare environment evolves into stable equilibrium. Of course, whether we do see a stable equilibrium is a questionable assumption in itself, but it doesn’t hurt to put on our futurist hats and explore how this may look for radiology. 

The dramatic growth in imaging utilization experienced at the beginning of the millennium has mostly leveled off, according to a study published in Health Affairs, primarily due to major cuts to reimbursement and more careful ordering of noninvasive exams.

While the Affordable Care Act (ACA)’s essential health benefits are now on the chopping block to entice the more conservative members of the House into supporting the American Health Care Act, losing the requirement that insurers cover preventative cancer screening isn’t a foregone conclusion.

The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA) said the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission’s (MedPAC) March 2017 report to Congress misrepresents the growth in imaging utilization, a criticism consistently levied by imaging advocates against MedPAC over the past decade.

 

Recent Headlines

Radiology should work with certified health records—not against them

Radiologists should understand the importance of using certified electronic health record (EHR) technology—now more than ever with the opening of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA)’s first reporting period.

As Policies Evolve, Practice Leadership Must Remain Active

As research director of a policy think tank dedicated to medical imaging, I’m frequently asked how radiologists—and their practices—will fit into the broader healthcare landscape once the current tumultuous healthcare environment evolves into stable equilibrium. Of course, whether we do see a stable equilibrium is a questionable assumption in itself, but it doesn’t hurt to put on our futurist hats and explore how this may look for radiology. 

FDA approves first digital pathology system for diagnostic use

Royal Phillips has received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance for its IntelliSite Pathology Solution, a pathology image creation and management system. Its currently the only digital pathology system cleared for primary diagnostic use, an important milestone in the burgeoning field.

USPSTF changes 2012 recommendation on PSA testing

Blood testing for prostate cancer now has a passing grade—the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) has changed its tune on prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening, upgrading the recommendation that some men undergo to a “C” grade.  

Legislation could modernize FDA regulations on imaging devices, contrast

Imaging advocacy groups have lined up to support a bill providing medical imaging device and contrast drug manufacturers a clear regulatory pathway, speeding the bench-to-bedside transition.

EU reconsiders pulling gadolinium contrast agents from market

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will re-examine its decision to pull several gadolinium contrast agents from the European single market following requests from gadolinium producers.

Imaging growth leveling off due to reimbursement cuts, changes in ordering

The dramatic growth in imaging utilization experienced at the beginning of the millennium has mostly leveled off, according to a study published in Health Affairs, primarily due to major cuts to reimbursement and more careful ordering of noninvasive exams.

No need to panic over talk of cutting essential health benefits, including low-cost preventative screening

While the Affordable Care Act (ACA)’s essential health benefits are now on the chopping block to entice the more conservative members of the House into supporting the American Health Care Act, losing the requirement that insurers cover preventative cancer screening isn’t a foregone conclusion.

MedPAC recommendations get it wrong on imaging, says MITA

The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA) said the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission’s (MedPAC) March 2017 report to Congress misrepresents the growth in imaging utilization, a criticism consistently levied by imaging advocates against MedPAC over the past decade.

EU pulls gadolinium contrast agents over deposition concerns

The medical regulatory body of the European Union (EU) recommended four gadolinium contrast agents be pulled from the market because of concerns about gadolinium deposition in the brain. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) suspended the marketing authorizations for the four agents after a review by its risk assessment committee.

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