Policy

A bill introduced in the California Senate has been amended to remove the in-office exception (IOE) for advanced imaging and radiation oncology from the state’s self-referral regulations. Additionally, SB 1215 would prohibit physicians in the state of California from self-referring for anatomic pathology and physical therapy services.

In a good-news–bad-news scenario for the radiology community, President Obama’s $3.9 trillion 2015 fiscal year budget would limit the self-referral rampant in advanced imaging and radiation oncology, but implement prior authorization for advanced imaging.

Diagnostic Imaging Group, an outpatient imaging chain with 36 locations in New York and Florida, will pay $15.5 million to settle charges that its centers falsely billed federal and state health-care programs for tests either not performed or not necessary, and for paying kickbacks to physicians.

A radiologist’s social-media indiscretions may have cost him his candidacy for the U.S. Senate and could land him in hot water with his state’s medical board. 

Caving to provider concern, CMS announced yesterday that it would implement end-to-end ICD-10 testing this summer for “a small sample group” of providers.

In a comment letter on the final 2014 Medicare fee schedule for physicians, the ACR pointed out once more the cumulative effect on imaging reimbursement of various recent legislative and policy changes and urged CMS to adopt a “dampening” policy to limit the total amount a specific procedural code could be reduced in a given year.