Feb. 4, 2014

Question of the week
What percentage of your practice's radiologists participated in PQRS in 2013 and will avoid the 2015 penalty?

Click here to take the poll.

Click here to see the results from the last Hot Topics poll: How are initial reports typically provided for plain film studies performed in hospitals served by your practice after the practice's normal business hours?

Click here to access the Radiology Hot Topics archives.More

RBMA member benefit: Advocacy
We get it, so you GET it! RBMA knows its members operate in a highly regulated field of healthcare and therefore provides you with timely updates from private payors, Capitol Hill and the regulatory branches of the federal government via our e-Alerts, sponsored by ADVOCATE. An e-Alert is a broadcast email message delivered to members (unless you have previously opted out) with breaking news and updates on RBMA's advocacy efforts. To view past e-Alerts, visit our website.

Thank you for being a valued member of RBMA! We deeply appreciate the feedback and input of our members. Do you have an idea for a benefit we could be providing? Share it with membership@rbma.org.More

Registration for the Radiology Summit is open
RBMA is racing to Charlotte, N.C. May 4-7, for the 46th annual Radiology Summit.

The RBMA pit crew will be hosting nearly 500 fans at the Westin Charlotte for an event that is sure to send you home a winner!

Register to attend today.

Radiology Summit
May 4-7
The Westin Charlotte
Charlotte, N.C.

Radiology Summit exhibitors: Prepare to submit your application
Booth applications are now being accepted for the Radiology Summit Exhibit Hall. Assignments will be made as follows:

Spend time connecting with radiology business professionals who have buying power during two-and-a-half days of focused networking and education.

Charlotte has a lot. A trendy, up-and-coming urban city loaded with Southern hospitality is what our attendees will find when they arrive in Charlotte. Home of the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte hosts a variety of museums and restaurants.

The conference hotel, The Westin Charlotte, is located in Uptown Charlotte and is within walking distance of a wide selection of fine dining and eateries to entertain clients.

For information on exhibiting, click here.More

Did you receive your dues renewal invoice?
If you have not yet renewed your RBMA membership for 2014 you should have received an invoice in the mail. If you have not, and plan to renew before your benefits expire in 24 days, please contact membership@rbma.org.

Please take a moment to review your invoice and mail it with your renewal payment to the RBMA office at 10300 Eaton Place, Fairfax, VA 22030, or fax it with a credit card payment to 703.621.3356.

We look forward to continuing to address your radiology business concerns and provide you with the best resources applicable to your radiology business.More

ICD-10 resources available on the RBMA website
On Oct. 1, 2014, the ICD-9 code sets used to report medical diagnoses and inpatient procedures will be replaced by ICD-10 code sets. To help you get ready for the implementation RBMA has posted a list of resources available to members here. Watch for informative articles to be posted soon.More

The State of Imaging Address
Join Dr. Ingrid Lund when she presents Imaging Market Update at the upcoming Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs seminar. Find out the key challenges facing the imaging industry right now, the impact healthcare exchanges are having on patient referral patterns, and discover strategies for surviving and thriving within the post reform era.

Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs
March 9-11
Renaissance Long Beach Hotel
Long Beach, Calif.

2014 dates for the Radiology Certified Coder (RCC®) exam released
The Radiology Coding Certification Board (RCCB) has recently released exam dates for the 2014 RCC® exam. The exam will include both ICD-9 and ICD-10 questions and will test the applicant's specific knowledge and ability to utilize ICD-9 codes. The ICD-10 questions on the exam will cover general information about ICD-10.

The exam will be administered:

RCCB has contracted with Comira Testing to offer the exam in a computer-based format at several locations nationwide. Save on time away from the office as well as the expense of costly travel.

For more information on RCCB and the exam click here.More

ADVOCATE renews Platinum Sponsorship with RBMA
ADVOCATE, the premier provider of radiology revenue cycle management services nationwide, announces that they have renewed their commitment to the Radiology Business Management Association for the sixth consecutive year as a Platinum Sponsor for 2014.More

Understanding high prices
Health Imaging
Two explanations are usually offered to explain variation in hospital prices within local markets. High prices are often associated with specialized, tertiary care hospitals with a unique mission, or the high-price hospital is exerting its market power in negotiation of prices with private payors. A study published in Health Affairs offers support for both explanations.More

Corporate asset protection: Shielding your practice from lawsuits, threats — Part II
By David B. Mandell, JD, MBA, and Jason M. O'Dell, MS, CWM
As we discussed in Part I of this article, in attempting to protect an ongoing practice or healthcare business against lawsuits and potential creditor threats, most leave much to be desired. They may rely too heavily on insurance, have suboptimal corporate structures in place and even unknowingly miss out on significant tax advantages. More

Navigating new payment models: A survival guide
Health Imaging
The winds of change in radiology have been forecasted for several years. High healthcare costs in the U.S. have brought greater scrutiny to imaging, and reform efforts have been designed to stimulate new payment models that promote accountable care. Now, it is time for radiology to act to maintain success and autonomy. More

Health information exchange lowers repeat emergency imaging
Aunt Minnie (registration required)
Adopting health information exchange between unaffiliated healthcare providers leads to significant decreases in repeat imaging studies in emergency departments and could potentially save millions of dollars, according to a large study from the University of Michigan. The researchers retrospectively analyzed repeat imaging rates for CT, chest x-ray, and ultrasound in 37 emergency departments in California and Florida that have initiated HIE. More

ACR asks CMS for reimbursement cut dampening
Imaging Biz
In a comment letter on the final 2014 Medicare fee schedule for physicians, the American College of Radiology pointed out once more the cumulative effect on imaging reimbursement of various recent legislative and policy changes and urged the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to adopt a "dampening" policy to limit the total amount a specific procedural code could be reduced in a given year. More

Attracting young adults to insurance exchanges proves difficult
By Pamela Lewis Dolan
After a slow and rocky start, the state and federal health insurance exchanges seem to finally be taking off. By the end of December, enrollment surpassed the 3 million mark for state and federal marketplaces combined. But young adults — who many claim are key to the success of the Affordable Care Act — haven't been as eager as their older counterparts to enroll. Adults between the ages of 18 and 34 make up 40 percent of the potential market for exchange plans. But a recent report by the Department of Health and Human Services shows they only accounted for a quarter of total enrollees.More

Feds barking up wrong tree on EHR fraud?
Doctors' habit of copying and pasting notes in their EHRs has come under increasing fire from those who suspect that they're using this method to justify higher charges to Medicare and private payors. In October 2012, the HHS Office of Inspector General launched an investigation into this practice, and OIG recently issued a report that said the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services wasn't providing sufficient guidance to its contractors to detect this kind of fraud.More

6 ways to avoid unintentional Medicare fraud
HealthLeaders Media
As physicians push to maximize their revenue, it can be easy to stumble into fraud through simple oversights and failing to understand how regulators look for claims that don't quite add up. Don't rest on the fact that you have no intention to defraud the government; sometimes you can get in just as much trouble by accident.More