Feature | July 09, 2008| Cristen Bolan

Cardiologists, Payers Set Out on Imaging Track

Cardiology fellows are expanding their knowledge in cardiovascular imaging. Not only do virtually all cardiology fellows get Level 2 training in echocardiography and many in nuclear cardiology but now, an increasing number of fellows are training in cardiac MR and cardiac CT.

For those cardiologists who did not receive such training, continuing medical education (CME) offerings and preceptorships enable them to acquire new skills in cardiac MR and cardiac CT.

Facilitating the imaging training paradigm is the development of a set of appropriateness criteria. Recently, the following cardiology societies, ACCF, ASE, ACEP, AHA, ASNC, SCAI, SCCT, SCMR, jointly issued the 2008 appropriateness criteria for stress echocardiography. Now, updates on criteria for cardiac CT and MR are underway.

Of course, one of the key objectives is to improve patient outcome. In the article, “Are Cardiologists the QB’s of Cardiac Imaging?,” appearing in this issue, appropriateness criteria is designed to, for example, prevent a coronary CT scan for a patient with an unstable coronary syndrome or a patient who has high creatinine or renal insufficiency. Mark A. Turco, M.D., points out in the article that these guidelines are critical to ensure the best information is provided to the physicians for making the best treatment decisions.

But is it all about the patients? You don’t need to look too far before you see the other driving force behind such an initiative – the payers. With pay-for-performance these guidelines will not only educate cardiologists but should also guide the third-party payers in making reimbursement decisions. In light of the Deficit Reduction Act (DRA) and sweeping reimbursement cuts enacted to meet arbitrary budget targets, let’s just hope that the payers get their imaging education too, before patients and the decisions doctors make to care for them represent little more than dollar signs.

Related Content

Allegheny General Hospital, MRI, patients with implantable cardiac devices, safety and effectiveness
News | EP Lab| February 01, 2016
The findings of a major study led by cardiovascular imaging specialists at Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) suggest...
critical limb ischemia, amputations, MRI-based mapping, CLI, British Heart Foundation
News | Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)| January 28, 2016
A new imaging technique could reduce the need for amputation in patients with critical limb ischemia (CLI), according...
Image Wisely, annual pledge process, medical imaging, radiation safety
News | Radiation Dose Management| January 27, 2016
Image Wisely participants must now make yearly commitments, as opposed to a one-time pledge, confirming their ongoing...
Medic Vision, SafeCT Enterprise, St. Joseph's/Candler Health System, Georgia
News | Computed Tomography (CT)| January 26, 2016
Medic Vision Imaging Solutions Ltd. announced the installation of SafeCT (computed tomography) at St. Joseph’s/Candler...
ECRI Institute, Rate This Model, medical equipment, review/rating tool
News | Business| January 25, 2016
Now, medical technology purchasers and users have an instant online forum to rate and review technologies they are...
ACC, ACR, chest pain, diagnostic imaging, emergency department, recommendations document
News | Cardiac Imaging| January 25, 2016
New recommendations from the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) have...
Siemens, Magnetom Amira MRI scanner, FDA clearance
Technology | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)| January 21, 2016
Siemens Healthcare announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the Magnetom Amira 1.5 Tesla...
MRI sensitivity, metamaterials, ITMO University, Advanced Materials

Artist's view of a biological object placed on a metasurface resonator. Image courtesy of Advanced Materials.

News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)| January 20, 2016
A group of researchers from Russia, Australia and the Netherlands have developed a technology that can reduce magnetic...
Cath lab radiation dose reduaction, doseaware, raysafe

The Philips DoseAware Xtend system is an advanced version of the Unfors RaySafe system, combining real time radiation detection badges and a live video screen showing each person in the cath lab in a different color. The system reports their real-time exposure rate and cumulative dose since the start of a procedure. It shows changes in dose exposure the closer a person gets to the C-arm.

Feature | Cardiac Imaging| January 12, 2016 | Dave Fornell
Each year radiology vendors use the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) meeting as a springboard to unveil t
News | Cardiac Imaging| December 28, 2015 | Dave Fornell
December 28, 2015 — Toshiba announced Dec.
Overlay Init