Sept. 20, 2011

Question of the Week
Are you actively pursuing participation in Meaningful Use of EHR technology initiatives for eligible professionals and, if yes, whom are you using to explore participation in the EHR Incentive Program?
Click here to take the poll.

Click here to see the results from the last Hot Topics poll:
Does your practice use voice recognition software to dictate radiology reports and, if so, how are the reports edited?

Click here for the Radiology Hot Topics archives.More

Top 10 fun things to do in Las Vegas
Aside from attending the Fall Educational Conference and ACR-RBMA Forum at the ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, if you have time or have extended your trip, try some or all of the following fun things to do:

• Cheap or fine dining at Mr. Lucky's 24-7 in the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas
• The Fremont Street Experience — taking up a large portion of Fremont Street and using some of the largest screens in the world, this show is good fun and entertainment for all ages
• Hiking, biking at Red Rock Canyon — 15 miles west of Las Vegas, witness a rich wildlife alongside towering red cliffs
• Vegas Underwater Kingdom and Lions' Den at the Shark Reef Aquarium located at the Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand Lion Habitat
• Fountains of Bellagio — a show of water, music and light; show times are Monday-Friday, 3 a.m.-midnight; Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, noon-midnight
• Cirque du Soleil — a mixture of surrealism, opera, creative water and aerial acrobatic performances
• Indoors/outdoors sky diving — solo or tandem at Skydive Las Vegas and Vegas Extreme Skydiving
• Stratosphere Tower — a spectacular view from the top of the tallest free-standing observation tower in the U.S.
• Grand Canyon — South Rim
• Hotels and casinos — too many to name!

Come to Las Vegas!

Fall Educational Conference
Oct. 16-19

Aria Resort & Casino
CityCenter, Las Vegas

Click here for details.More

The fun begins with the ACR-RBMA Forum
Arrive in Las Vegas in time to attend the ACR-RBMA Forum with your physician or even just by yourself. Some engaging discussions and enjoyable networking will start your Las Vegas experience.

Register today.

New Strategies for Business and Clinical Leaders in Radiology
Oct. 14-16

Aria Resort & Casino
CityCenter, Las Vegas

Click here for details. Thank you to our sponsors:


More coding at the Fall Educational Conference
The Interventional Radiology Coding Course will be offered as a pre-conference session at the Fall Educational Conference. Part of the RBMA Coding Academy sponsored by , this two-day workshop will be taught by Jeff Majchrzak, BA, R.T.(R)(ARRT), CNMT, RCC, CIRCC, and Ezequiel "Zeke" Silva III, MD, RCC, and will cover core rules, regulations and definitions needed to code interventional radiology services confidently. Attendees are encouraged to submit difficult cases to review, discuss and discover how to code like the experts!

Register for this course along with the Fall Educational Conference or separately.

Interventional Radiology Coding Course
Oct. 15-16

Aria Resort & Casino
CityCenter, Las Vegas

Click here to register.More

FREE webinar for RBMA members: A Radiology Coder's Guide to Getting Ready for ICD-10-CM
Only available to the first 50 members who register! Offered by Coding Strategies, Inc., join coding expert Melody Mulaik, PCS, FCS, CPC, CPC-H, RCC, and find out what you need to know to prepare for the implementation of ICD-10-CM on Oct. 1, 2013.

Wednesday, Sept. 28
1-2 p.m. ET

Click here to register.More

FREE webinar for RBMA members: Accurate Coding of Nuclear Medicine Procedures
Learn or review the basic principles of nuclear medicine coding, choosing the appropriate code and understanding the various acronyms and combinations important for nuclear medicine procedures.

This webinar is taught by Denise A. Merlino, MBA, CNMT, FSNMTS, CPC, a nationally recognized nuclear medicine coding expert. She has expertise in medical imaging, drug and radiopharmaceutical reimbursement, hospital and physician office administration, pharmaceutical marketing and payor relations.

Tuesday, Oct. 4
1-2 p.m. ET

This webinar is jointly produced by the RBMA and the AHRA and is being generously sponsored and hosted by Advance for Imaging & Radiation Oncology.
Click here to register.More

Need a radiology product or service?
By clicking on the Call-A-Vendor button, you may send a broadcast email to participating vendors. The vendor who can provide you with a solution will contact you directly.

Click here to access the Call-A-Vendor button.More

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

Albuquerque, N.M., practice increases billing volume, reimbursements
Orion HealthCorp, Inc.
Navigating the changing complexities of current billing requirements and maintaining peak performance for Accounts Receivable are two key factors for success with today's radiology practices. ZIA Diagnostic Imaging, a radiology practice with 11 radiologists working in three hospitals and two outpatient clinics in the Albuquerque, N.M., area, addresses these challenges with help from Orion HealthCorp, Inc.More

Viability of ACOs in doubt
ADVOCATE Radiology Billing
During the health care debate, the Mayo Clinic, the Cleveland Clinic, Geisinger Health System and Intermountain Healthcare were repeatedly touted as models for a new health care delivery system. Now, they have something else in common: all four have declined to apply for the "Pioneer" program tailor-made by the Obama administration to reward such organizations.More

CFO exchange: Weighing expenses against quality mandates
HealthLeaders Media
With revenues from commercial and federal payors precipitously dropping, and mandates for reporting and quality dramatically climbing, what is the thoughtful hospital CFO to do? How much should be invested in ICD-10 technology, which is mandated by the government to take effect in two years, if productivity and revenue may drop as a result?More

Council endorses deficit reduction proposals
Imaging Biz
The Healthcare Leadership Council endorsed four deficit reduction proposals estimated to save $410 billion over 10 years. The council is urging Congress' Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to create a Medicare Exchange in which private plans would compete on cost, quality and value; gradually increase the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67; reform Medicare's cost-sharing structure; and implement medical liability reforms, including a cap on non-economic damages. More

HHS pushes federal-state partnerships for insurance exchanges
Kaiser Health News
Worried that the federal government could end up running new insurance marketplaces for dozens of states, the Obama administration is making a new pitch for cooperation to 46 states and the District of Columbia. Health officials from the states are meeting in the District of Columbia with the administration, which is proposing several models for ways to divvy up exchange duties between Washington and the states. More

JAMIA: FDA reports inform health IT safety problems classification
Health Imaging & IT
Research in the September edition of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association found that while only 0.1 percent of Manufacturer and User Facility Device Experience database reports searched were related to health IT, the FDA reports proved to be a useful source of information about the nature of software problems and their safety implications with the potential to inform strategies for safe design and implementation.More

Medicare pay-for-performance plan criticized over early launch
American Medical News
Members of organized medicine are sharply critical of a plan by the Obama administration to initiate a Medicare value-based purchasing program two years before federal law requires it. The health system reform law requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to use a value-based payment modifier — another term for pay-for-performance — for some physicians starting in 2015. More

Q&A: Maximizing profits in hospital-based radiology practices, Part 1
Diagnostic Imaging (registration required)
Increased regulations and higher fixed costs have many private radiology clinics across the U.S. choosing to affiliate with local hospitals or health care systems. Doing so, however, has raised new questions on the revenue side. Does it become easier or more difficult for a radiology practice to maximize its financial efficiency once it joins a larger health care system? What are the pitfalls — and the opportunities?More

Radiology workflow improved by offering access to studies anywhere, anytime
Imaging Economics
Not too long ago, a radiologist was tied to a specific workstation and had to log on to that machine to download and view images. Then he had to put those images on a CD and send them to a referring physician, who then went through a similar downloading process. Now, thanks to new thin-client and zero-client technologies, radiologists and physicians can view and share medical images anytime, and anywhere in the hospital or even on a home computer.More

SPECT/MPI guidelines reduce inappropriate exams
Aunt Minnie (registration required)
Appropriateness criteria developed in 2009 by the American College of Cardiology and the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology performed "fairly well" for certain indications, reducing the number of inappropriate imaging exams, according to a study presented at ASNC's annual meeting in Denver.More