HAP Radiology Billing and Coding Blog

How To Enhance Practice Revenue Using Video Reporting on July 1, 2022

Radiologists at NYU Langone Medical Center have been creating video radiology reports in addition to their traditional text-based reports. The videos are intended for the patient, not the referring physician, and they are uploaded to the patient portal as they are completed. A team headed by Michael P. Recht, MD, studied the results, which became available online April 20 at the American Journal of Roentgenology. An example of a video report is included in NYU Langone’s NewsHub.

Categories: radiology reimbursement, radiology coding, radiology, TAVR

The Contrast Media Shortage’s Impact on Radiology on June 1, 2022

The shutdown of GE Healthcare’s Shanghai, China plant that began in April has caused a global shortage of the iodinated contrast media iohexol (GE’s Omnipaque TM). GE reports that it has returned to a 50% production rate, and they have shifted some production to a plant in Ireland, but they expect an 80% reduction in supplies through June. Alternative contrast agents such as iodixanol (GE’s Vispaque TM) and ioversol (Optiray[1]) are becoming scarce as practices have shifted to using those products instead of iohexol. As of May 31, Omnipaque, Vispaque, and Ultravist (Bayer’s iopromide) have been added to the FDA’s list of drug shortages.

Categories: radiology, contrast media shortage

Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) Penalty Phase Set to Begin on April 29, 2022

Will the requirement to use Clinical Decision Support (CDS) finally become a reality? The current timetable for the penalty phase of the AUC/CDS rule calls for it to begin on the later of January 1, 2023, or the January 1 following the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE). The PHE has just been extended another 90 days into July 2022, with no end in sight although there are some indications that it could end this year. One source reports that the Administration will give 60 days’ notice before ending the PHE. With this uncertainty, it would be wise for practices to be ready just in case!

Categories: interventional radiology, clinical decision support, CDS, radiology, appropriate use criteria, AUC

United Healthcare is Moving to a Designated Diagnostic Provider Program on April 6, 2022

On July 1, 2022, United Healthcare will begin to implement its Designated Diagnostic Provider (DDP) program for imaging facilities in certain states. According to United’s FAQ document, outpatient MRI/MRA, CT, PET, and nuclear medicine scans must be performed by a Designated Diagnostic Provider in order for members to have the lowest out-of-pocket cost. A member will pay more for services provided by non-DDP imaging facilities.

Categories: radiology, DDP, Designated Diagnostic Provider

Medical Debt Credit Reporting Policy Changes Will Impact Radiology Practices on March 29, 2022

One of the tools available to assist with the collection of unpaid patient balances is to report the debt to a credit reporting bureau. While typically used as a last resort, it has had the effect of ultimately achieving collection when the patient applies for a loan that requires them to clear up the open balances shown on the credit report. While most physician groups are compassionate and are willing to work with their patients to avoid credit bureau reporting, they are required by insurance laws to pursue collection of patient co-payments and coinsurance. With patient deductibles, copayments and coinsurance increasing in many plans, loss of revenue to the practice through non-collection has become a bigger concern over recent years.

Categories: patient collections, radiology, medical debt

When & How to Bill For Locum Tenens Services In The Radiology Practice on March 22, 2022

The workload of a radiology practice doesn’t diminish when one of the physicians is away, either on leave or due to termination, and one way to cope with the shortfall of staff is to use a temporary physician service. Knowing how to properly bill for those services is essential to maintaining cash flow in compliance with the regulations.

Categories: radiology billing, radiology, locum tenens

Coverage is Expanded for Lung Cancer Screening Using LDCT on February 16, 2022

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced a shift in its eligibility criteria for coverage of lung cancer screening using low-dose CT (LDCT), thus joining other payers in adopting recommendations made by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF).  In addition, CMS made other modifications to its eligibility criteria that will increase the ability of more people to obtain access to screening, effective February 10, 2022 with the posting of its Decision Memo.

Categories: low dose CT, radiology, lung cancer screening

Practical Implications of the No Surprises Act for Radiology Practices on February 12, 2022

The federal No Surprises Act (NSA) has been in effect for a few weeks and many practices are just now beginning to make adjustments to accommodate the law. The level of pro-active involvement might be different for practices working solely in a hospital system from those with a private office or imaging center.

Categories: radiology reimbursement, radiology, No Surprises Act, NSA

Coding Changes That Will Impact Radiology Practices In 2022 on January 24, 2022

There are 249 new codes in Current Procedural Terminology[i] (CPT)® that are now in effect for 2022, plus 93 revised codes and 63 deleted codes. However, of all those changes relatively few will impact radiology practices.

Categories: radiology coding, IR coding, CPT codes, radiology

Understanding The Impact of The Medicare Fee Schedule For 2022 On Your Radiology Practice on January 17, 2022

Now that the final Medicare conversion factor (CF) for 2022 of $34.6062 has been established, following passage of the Protecting Medicare and American Farmers from Sequester Cuts Act, we can analyze the real impact that radiology practices can expect this year. We reported recently that the final CF is a 0.82% reduction from the 2021 rate. However, the CF is not the only factor that affects the Medicare fee schedule. CMS annually revises the pricing of various procedure codes due to changes in practice expense, which generally affects the Technical Component (TC) more than the Professional Component (PC). Accordingly, radiologists will see a different overall result for services in a private office or imaging center than they will for hospital services.

Categories: radiology reimbursement, medicare, medicare reimbursement, radiology, Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

Subscribe to our radiology billing and coding blog

Recent Posts

Testimonial

How a radiology practice recovered lost referrals