Quantifying imaging value with the use of cost-effectiveness analyses

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Quantifying imaging value with the use of cost-effectiveness analyses

John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | December 11, 2019
Business Affairs X-Ray

To illustrate this point, she shared a quote from a 2008 journal article on healthcare costs: “When we dine where the menu has no prices, we should not be surprised by the size of the bill.”

The final speaker, Dr. Andrew Rosenkrantz, director of public policy and professor of radiology and urology, NYU School of Medicine, offered a different take on assessing radiology value. He argued that because the radiologist does not order imaging exams and because they don't necessarily influence the downstream decisions based on the exams, imaging value can be challenging to measure.

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But, he said, there are other, more immediate hands-on value strategies available to radiologists. Among the factors that affect value are turnaround times, report accuracy, patient access, use of structured reporting, and participation on hospital committees and tumor boards.

Still, Rosenkrantz agreed that radiologists need to be in the ongoing business of defining their value. The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission that makes healthcare payment recommendations to Congress has a history of viewing medical imaging as a high-cost specialty in need of control. Radiologists, he maintained, need to be their own best advocate for making a CEA case.

He also reminded the attendees that it's essential to be mindful of the patient perspective in any discussion about imaging value. Patients seek caring, professional, pleasant, helpful, and efficient qualities in their care from staff, according to satisfaction surveys. This applies to all staff in imaging operations, from the receptionist to the technologist to the radiologist.

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