Medical Imaging Review

CMS says 2020 is to be a year of “educational and operations” CDS testing. But the agency is likely to soon begin compiling data on slow adopters. Here’s what matters under the federal AUC mandate.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been one of the most hyped advancements in radiology for many years now, sparking vigorous debates about its potential impact on patient care. But early on, discussions about AI were more theoretical than factual; it was simply too early to know what the future may bring.

MEDNAX Radiology Education has begun offering radiologists weekly CME sessions that take around 15 minutes to complete and were more than a decade in the making.

For physicians who treat Medicare patients, everything changes next New Year’s Day. 

That’s when real consequences begin to befall those who order advanced imaging—CT, MRI or PET scans—without first consulting appropriate use criteria (AUC). They’ll need to show they did so by using a CMS-qualified clinical decision support mechanism (qCDSM).

I love being a neuroradiologist and helping patients. I’ve always loved it. But there are downsides to the work as well. The stress levels might be high, you can feel isolated or restricted and your work list may control everything you do—it’s no wonder burnout is so high in our profession these days.

As far back as my undergraduate years, I knew I wanted to work in a field that combined medicine with computer science. I actually had a professor who told me that was a silly combination. He said there’d never be a real-world need for it. How wrong he was—and how fortunate I am to now work for a radiology practice whose hallmark is its enthusiastic embrace of IT and imaging informatics.

Imad Nijim, chief information officer of MEDNAX Radiology Solutions and Virtual Radiologic (vRad), has been in medical imaging and informatics for more than 18 years. He’s seen a lot during that time, but nothing quite as groundbreaking or exciting as the artificial intelligence (AI) currently being developed by researchers all over the world. Nijim spoke with Radiology Business about MEDNAX Radiology Solutions’ plans for AI, what he sees in the industry today, and the company’s big plans for RSNA 2018.

A little more than a year ago, I left my full partnership position at a successful radiology practice for a teleradiology job with vRad, a MEDNAX company. I was a bit nervous making such a life-changing decision, but I knew I needed a change. Partnership had been a life goal since med school, but now I had different priorities. I had kids, new interests. Making the move allowed me to focus more on me and my family while still doing the work that I love.

If a mad scientist were to meld the mind of a passionate teaching radiologist with that of an especially acquisitive museum curator, the result would surely be someone very much like Benjamin W. Strong, MD.

When Merritt Hawkins published its 2018 Review of Physician and Advanced Practitioner Recruiting Incentives, it contained some exciting news for radiologists: after a rough few years earlier this decade, the radiology job market has climbed back with a vengeance.

In a California emergency room, a trauma patient in critical condition is wheeled in following a motorcycle accident. In Texas, a patient presenting with stroke-like symptoms is brought into the hospital by frantic family members.

To meet the latest guidelines on promptness from the American Heart Association (AHA) and American Stroke Association (ASA), providers must image suspected stroke patients within 20 minutes of their arrival. For a brain deprived of oxygen by a blood clot, every second counts.