Imaging Self-Referrals Cost US $100M, Threaten Health: GAO

Law360, New York (October 31, 2012, 4:54 PM EDT) -- Use of medical imaging devices has surged among physicians who have financial stakes in such equipment and make self-referrals, costing Medicare more than $100 million in 2010 and raising concerns about patients’ radiation exposure, according to a Wednesday report that prompted alarm in Congress.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office study found that self-referred CT scans spiked more than 100 percent from 2004 to 2010, while CT scans not resulting from self referrals increased only 30 percent. In the case of MRI tests, which don’t produce radiation,...
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