Healthcare Economics & Policy

Medicare part B spending on medical imaging per beneficiary is down in almost every state since peaking in 2005 and 2006, according to a study published in the American Journal of Roentgenology.

Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Teresa Miller announced last week that her department will hold a public hearing about balance billing on Oct. 1.

So much for a summer lull. Some of the biggest names in healthcare made big moves this month, announcing major acquisitions and partnerships that will reshape markets and lead to some pretty intriguing improvements for patient care.

The vacancy rates for numerous imaging disciplines have increased in the last two years, according to a recent survey performed by American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT).

Radiologists had less reportable non-research-related, physician-industry financial relationships than most other medical specialties, according to a recent article published by the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Capital One Financial Corp is close to acquiring General Electric (GE) Co.’s healthcare finance unit, GE Capital Healthcare Financial Services, for over $10 billion, according to a recent report by Reuters.

The top 1% of all physicians who billed Medicare in 2013—including 240 radiologists—received 17.5% of the federal program’s total payments, according to the Wall Street Journal’s recent analysis of CMS data. That number is up from 16.6% in 2012.  

A Supreme Court ruling on King v. Burwell, a case questioning the constitutionality of federal subsidies found within the Affordable Care Act, is expected by the end of June. An interactive map from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows how a ruling in favor of the plaintiffs could affect the 34 states in which exchanges are run by the federal government.

Healthcare providers looking to engage patients will find a key enabling—and potentially disruptive—tool in their back pockets: the smartphone.  Writing in the Saturday edition of the Wall Street Journal, cardiologist Eric Topol, MD, reviews a growing portfolio of powerful new applications and devices that can diagnose an ear infection, monitor mental health, track heart rhythms and even generate x-rays.

A breach at an Alabama hospital that resulted in a two-year jail term for a hospital employee suggests that insider threats to patient data security may be greater challenge than many providers understand.

Registration is open for RBMA 2015 Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs. The meeting will be held in New Orleans, LA, from March 15-17, 2015.

The 12th Annual World Health Care Congress convenes decision makers from all sectors of health care to catalyze change.