Outpatient Imaging Providers Organize to Promote Low-cost Alternative
Several independent imaging centers throughout the Southeast have joined together to form the Outpatient Imaging Coalition (OIC), an alliance aimed at promoting the availability of high-quality imaging services available at a cost lower than that charged by hospitals. “In this time of grave concern about the rapidly growing cost in healthcare, it is our hope that medical providers and the general public will see the tremendous cost savings they can experience in using outpatient imaging centers for their diagnostic imaging needs,” states Paul Cote, COO of coalition member Cypress Partners, LLC, Roswell, Ga. Cote says the banding together of imaging centers in a coalition to promote such cost savings exemplifies the manner in which traditional competitors are gathering together for the betterment of the industry as a whole. Providers belonging to the coalition, whose names patients can access via its Web site at www.gooutpatient.com, offer MRI, CT, PET/CT and other imaging services. All providers work directly with patients’ physicians, accept most insurance providers, and guarantee the quality of all scans produced. In order to qualify for OIC membership, imaging centers must meet a rigorous set of standards, including accreditation from the American College of Radiology (ACR). Their scans must be read by, and the results passed on to, board-certified physicians. The caliber of members’ scanning equipment caliber must match that of units found in hospitals. Additionally, as a prerequisite for OIC membership, providers must accept Medicaid and PeachCare For Kids ™, a comprehensive program that affords health care benefits to Georgia residents through the age of 18 who do not qualify for Medicaid and live in households with incomes at or below 235% of the federal poverty level.