Medicare Diagnostic Imaging Rates

HEHS-94-129R: Published: Apr 5, 1994. Publicly Released: Apr 5, 1994.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed diagnostic imaging services offered by physicians, focusing on a comparison of in-practice and referral rates for 7 types of imaging services. GAO noted that: (1) physicians who had their own imaging equipment had much higher imaging rates for all types of imaging services; and (2) in-practice imaging rates were about 3 times higher for magnetic resonance imaging, about 2 times higher for computed tomography scans, 4.5 to 5 times higher for ultrasound, echocardiography, and diagnostic nuclear medicine imaging, and about 2 times higher for complex and simple X-rays.

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