ACR critical of Medicare fee schedule
Article Thumbnail ImageJuly 5, 2011 -- Imaging cuts in the proposed Medicare Fee Schedule rule for 2012 will drive many imaging providers from practice, restrict access to care, and may increase Medicare costs for many of these services, according to a statement from the American College of Radiology (ACR).
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The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed a multiple procedure payment reduction (MPPR) of 50% in the professional component of CT, MRI, and ultrasound services administered to the same patient on the same day in the same setting.

"This unprecedented step would slash the reimbursement for physician interpretation and diagnosis. Cuts have previously been applied only to the technical component, or overhead costs of providing exams," the ACR stated.

The organization cited a recent study from the Journal of the American College of Radiology; in the study, researchers concluded that while potential efficiencies in physician work may exist when multiple services are provided to the same patient during the same session, the results are highly variable and considerably less than policymakers contend.