Apr. 3, 2013

Question of the week
Does your imaging center or IDTF use patient satisfaction surveys? Click here to take the poll.

Click here to see the results from the last Hot Topics poll: What is your group's current billing status?

Click here to access the Hot Topics archives.More

RBMA member benefit: Chapters
One of the benefits of RBMA membership is the eligibility to participate in a state or regional chapter if one has been established in the member's state or region. Chapters hold their own meetings in addition to the National Organization in an effort to reach out and connect radiology professionals in the same geographic vicinity. Chapter meetings focus on local radiology business concerns.

Visit our website for a list of current RBMA chapters.

If a chapter does not exist in your area, you may want to consider starting a chapter. If you are interested in starting a chapter, download the Chapter Toolkit or contact Jessica Struve, RBMA membership manager, at 703.621.3359 or email jessica.struve@rbma.org.More

How to improve radiologist productivity
Radiologist productivity is the most controversial topic in our industry today. Find out what one practice went through to improve radiologist productivity when Amanda McNutt, MBA, and Charles McRae, MBA, present Journey to Productive: One Radiology Practice's Path to Improvement at the upcoming Radiology Summit.

Register to attend today!

RBMA 2013 Radiology Summit
The Broadmoor
1 Lake Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80906

Click here for details.More

NEW! Pre-Conference* session added to the Radiology Summit
RBMA is pleased to announce the addition of a pre-conference session presented by the United States Air Force Academy's Center for Character and Leadership Development to be held in conjunction with the Radiology Summit.

Leading by Character: Creating Great Leaders
Sunday, May 19
1-5 p.m.

Since character and leadership are complementary and inseparable concepts, synergies result from integrating character and leadership training/education into a common effort.

Radiology Summit attendees now have the unique opportunity to spend an afternoon with two CCLD faculty as they lead a half-day pre-conference session focusing on the attributes of all successful leaders, with character being foremost among them.

This highly interactive program includes a discussion of human tendencies and behaviors and how they impact leadership styles and decision making, obstacles to success, the United States Air Force Academy's definition of "Leader of Character," and small group and individual exercises and activities that will elucidate each attendee's personal leadership style.

Seating is limited for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

*Separate fee of $150 required

Click here for details about the Radiology Summit.More

Participate in RBMA's mini-Survey: Do You Use Early Out for Self-Pay Collections?
RBMA is conducting a mini-Survey on the use of "Early Out" or "Extended Business Office," a process of turning over self-pay accounts (including or excluding self-pay after insurance) to an outside agency for collection at an early age. The age is usually from 0 to 60 days after the account balance becomes patient responsibility. The patient balance usually stays on the practice's A/R and ages until it is either paid or turned back to the practice for bad debt write-off and collection. The outside agency acts as an extension of the practice's billing office, using the practice's name when contacting patients by calling or mailing statements, letters, etc. to collect the patient balance.

Completion of this mini-Survey should require no more than 10 minutes of your time.

Please click here to access the questionnaire. The mini-Survey will be open for participation until April 19.More

Become a Radiology Certified Coder this year!
The RCCB® certification program is designed to seek out the motivated coder desiring to become an expert in the field.

Employers who have certified coders can feel confident that billing claims are submitted with accurate and compliant codes. The result is higher reimbursements faster.

Coders who are certified give credibility to the vocation and are viewed as a professional in the field. Certification increases employment opportunities and creates personal success.

RCCB has made the process to become certified easier by offering computer-based testing at twenty locations nationwide. The next available test dates are May 13-17. To reserve your spot and your future please submit your application to the RCCB office no later than April 8.

Click here for more information.More

Calendar of events
Click here for this week's RBMA calendar of events.More

Healthcare analytics market to exceed $10 billion by 2017
With all the doom and gloom we've been reading about the PC market recently, many of you may be wondering where, exactly, the growth opportunities are in IT. Well, wonder no more. The answer is healthcare IT. I've been talking about the growing need for electronic health records for quite some time now, and certainly EHR is a growth market. But what can you do with all that information?More

CMS unveils hospital violations database
HealthLeaders Media
For the first time, providers, payers and patients now have an enormous searchable database containing documents detailing about 8,000 serious federal safety rule violations at about 1,000 U.S. hospitals since January 2011. More

Radiology consolidation: An update on the practice landscape
Diagnostic Imaging (registration required)
Fifteen years ago, the face of radiology practice looked distinctly different. Most practitioners were either in private practice or they aspired to be. That trend is now in the midst of a 180-degree turn. Today, radiology's landscape is dominated by steadily increasing consolidation.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 fifth consecutive year as a Platinum Sponsor for 2013.More

No joke: Massive Gamma Knife payment cut started April 1
Aunt Minnie (registration required)
It may seem like an April Fools' Day joke, but it's a painful reality for users of the Gamma Knife radiation therapy system from Elekta. Starting April 1, they will be paid 58 percent less for procedures performed with the system. The cut is the result of legislation passed last year by Congress, which reduced Gamma Knife payments for Medicare patients from approximately $8,100 per procedure to $3,400. More

Study: Health law to raise claims cost 32 percent
The Associated Press via The News & Observer
A new study finds that insurance companies will have to pay out an average of 32 percent more for medical claims on individual health policies under President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. What does that mean for you? It could increase premiums for at least some Americans. If you are uninsured, or you buy your policy directly from an insurance company, you should pay attention. More

March Madness in radiology: the push for ACOs
Diagnostic Imaging (registration required)
The season has brought a different kind of March Madness in healthcare as we see a rush to develop and implement accountable care organizations. Often these are being driven by hospitals or health systems, but multispecialty groups are also in the game, and large, single-specialty groups need to be players as well. Whispers in radiology circles are that ACOs could put a full-court press on hospital-based specialties, creating headaches for them.More

MPPR correction resurfaces, but what about the utilization rate?
Imaging Biz
Radiology advocates are still reeling from the fiscal cliff deal, a piece of legislation that failed to reverse the multiple procedure payment reduction and boosted the utilization rate on imaging equipment to 90 percent. MPPR correction legislation is back on the docket and racking up co-sponsors, but what about the utilization rate?More

Price transparency in healthcare — The latest buzzwords
By Dr. Jonathan Kaplan
Unless you're totally oblivious to all forms of media from TV, print or Internet, you've probably heard about the Affordable Care Act, or ObamaCare. One of the main goals of the legislation is to bring down healthcare costs by several means — cutting reimbursements, decreasing the amount insurance companies spend on salaries, etc. One hope of the new law is to decrease costs by increasing competition on healthcare plans. How do they plan to do this? Price transparency, my friend.More

Looking to share your expertise?
In an effort to enhance the overall content of RadCast, we'd like to include peer-written articles in future editions. As a member of RBMA, your knowledge and experience in the industry can be of great help to your fellow members. And we're hoping you'll share this expertise with your peers through well-written commentary. Because of the digital format, there's no word or graphical limit, and our group of talented editors can help with final edits. If you're interested in participating, please contact Ronnie Richard to discuss logistics.More