June 18, 2012 -- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center has awarded a $6 million grant to radiology management and interpretation services firm Imaging Advantage and partners for a project titled, "The right exam, at the right time, read by the right radiologist."
Imaging Advantage is working in partnership with Vanguard Health Systems and other Chicago-area hospital systems on the project, which aims to re-engineer the end-to-end workflow process for hospital-based imaging services, according to CMS. This will include implementing clinical decision-support (CDS) tools and facilitating immediate consultations between ordering physicians and radiologists on the front end of the patient-care continuum.
A key objective of the program is to reduce duplicative and/or clinically unnecessary advanced imaging exams, according to CMS. In addition, Imaging Advantage will deploy its RealTime QA software, which applies double-blind interpretations to high-difficulty exams. The program will also eliminate preliminary after-hours reads and improve exam turnaround times, CMS said.
The agency is expecting a 30% decrease in CT use, as well as decreased use of other imaging modalities from the program. It will also evaluate planned centers in Detroit, San Antonio, and Boston.
The program also includes training for 495 individuals in healthcare-related jobs over a three-year period; the new workforce will include clinical, IT development, and operational staff. CMS estimates three-year savings of $14.9 million from the project.