Diagnostic Imaging Providers Must be Proactive in Response to Anticipated Budget Cuts: Foundation Radiology Group

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The healthcare provider prior authorization requirement for advanced diagnostic imaging services is projected to save $820 million over the next 10 years according to the Obama 2013 budget. As a result, imaging service providers should be proactive by providing better education to physicians and patients to determine what may or may not be appropriate.

Foundation Radiology Group
We recognize how important diagnostic imaging can be to a community hospital's bottom line and do not want to see those margins eroded by denials in payment or last minute cancelations.

-- Tom Skelton, CEO of Foundation Radiology Group

The proposed 2013 Obama budget prompted the entire healthcare imaging industry to take notice based on cuts projected to save approximately $820 million over 10 years with the requirement to include prior authorization for advanced diagnostic imaging services. Even prior to this announcement, Foundation Radiology Group had taken a very active role ensuring that the community hospitals and healthcare facilities it serves have the best possible information on how to make use of diagnostic imaging to effectively and efficiently treat their patients.

CEO of Foundation Radiology Group, Tom Skelton noted “As part of our mission to revolutionize the practice of radiology in the community hospital setting, we’ve taken proactive steps to educate the local providers of imaging services on what may or may not be appropriate.” Skelton added “We recognize how important diagnostic imaging can be to a community hospital's bottom line and do not want to see those margins eroded by denials in payment or last minute cancelations of studies that may be deemed unnecessary.”

While recognizing that imaging pre-authorization schemes have been shown to curb demand for such tests and services, several leading radiological association groups, including the American College of Radiology (ACR), have voiced concern that having CMS implement imaging pre-authorization processes would restrict access to imaging, raise costs and impact manufacturing jobs. Though appreciative of the need to ensure imaging is used wisely we believe that the potential to eliminate inappropriate use of this valuable service might be better achieved through other means including items such as further crackdowns on self-referral, physician education, and tort reform.

In the end, Foundation Radiology Group believes it’s important that the physicians and health systems directly involved in the care cycle have significant freedom in determining how to best meet the needs of individual patients. Placing additional administrative burdens on community hospitals, local physicians and elderly patients who are already struggling with the challenges of the care delivery system has the potential to cause unintended consequences.

About Foundation Radiology Group
Foundation Radiology Group, founded to revolutionize the practice of radiology in community healthcare settings, combines the subspecialty services of a renowned, highly-trained physician team with a state-of-the-art technology solution to provide hospitals, physicians and patients access to a high-quality, elegant diagnostic imaging solution, with industry-leading, final diagnosis clinically relevant turn-around times.

Foundation Radiology Group radiologists are all US-based providers and offer expertise in every subspecialty, including pediatric, neurology, mammography, musculoskeletal, PET/CT, cardiac CT and interventional radiology. Our physicians and highly-skilled customer service team are available 24/7/365.

For more information, visit http://www.foundationradiologygroup.com, call 412-223-2272 or follow on Twitter @foundationRad.

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Philip Feldstein
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