Advanced Imaging Utilization Study Gets Underway

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An assessment of appropriate advanced imaging utilization for Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries, being conducted on behalf of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), is now underway. Authorized by section 135 (b) of the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008, the study began earlier this month, will be completed over two years, and involves multiple physician organizations totaling nearly 650 physicians. It intended to examine the impact of physician decision support tools on mitigating the inappropriate use of advanced imaging services in MRI, CT, and nuclear medicine. Support systems within the study will provide immediate feedback to help physicians determine whether a test is suitable and necessary for a given patient based on appropriateness guidelines established by the medical community. Five health care providers were selected by CMS to execute the study. They are: Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Mass.; the Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Mich.; Maine Medical Center - Physician Hospital Organization, Portland, Maine; the University of Wisconsin Medical Foundation, Fitchburg, Wisconsin; and National Imaging Associates, a radiology benefits management company headquartered in Avon, Connecticut. For additional information on the project, click here: