Do Radiologists Fit in America’s Future Health Care System?

The following post was contributed by Geraldine McGinty, MD, MBA, FACR.

These aren’t fighting words—let’s call this a temperature check. Have you asked yourself lately: How do radiologists (replace radiologists with I) fit in America’s future health care system?

Bioethicist and Affordcredit the photographerable Care Act (ACA) architect Ezekiel J. (Zeke) Emanuel, MD, PhD, will address this question in his keynote address at ACR 2016 — The Crossroads of Radiology®. Having heard him speak on this topic before, I expect that he will live up to his reputation as an “opinionator” in addressing “The Future of American Health Care: What Is the Role of Radiology?” Emanuel will provide advice for radiologists on how to adapt to the new health care environment, including responding to economics and costs as driving forces for change, and focusing on patients with chronic conditions.

He served as a special adviser for health policy to the White House Office of Management and Budget and has written a definitive account of the ACA. Trained both as an oncologist and a political scientist, his is a school of thought that redefines a physician’s duty, proposing that it includes working for the greater good of society instead of focusing only on a patient’s needs.

What will our health care system look like 5 and 10 years from now? How do radiologists evolve for the coming health care system change? Who should get medical care?

These are the types of questions that prompt dialogue, which in turn changes mindsets and routines. This is why you come to The Crossroads of Radiology®.

I would be interested to know:

What question(s) would you want to ask Emanuel about the ACA and/or our role in the future of American medicine?

What insights might you provide to him that could perhaps change his views on where radiology (and radiologists) fit into his ideal health care system?   

Create a High-quality, Cost-effective Lung Screening Process

This post was contributed by Ella Kazerooni, MD, FACR, chair of the American College of Radiology Lung Cancer Screening Committee and ACR Thoracic Imaging Panel.

Ella KazerooniIt’s been nine months since Medicare’s decision to cover low-dose computed tomography (CT) lung cancer screening, giving seniors at high-risk for the disease access to care that can save more lives than any cancer screening test in history.

November’s Lung Cancer Awareness Month typically provides the opportunity to raise awareness and increase attention to this disease. For providers, it should be a time to gain or sharpen our tools needed to provide safe, effective lung cancer screening with the latest research, toolkits and key patient information.

High-quality, cost-effective screening requires standardized processes, including appropriate identification of individuals for screening, the CT screening technique itself, reporting of the CT results, and the management of positive results, including incidental significant findings and the inclusion of smoking cessation as part of any lung cancer screening program. What necessary steps are you taking to create a quality, sustainable, effective CT lung cancer screening process — paying particular attention to patient safety?

 Critical information is available on the ACR Lung Cancer Screening Resources webpage. Providers can meet Medicare quality reporting requirements to receive payment for lung cancer screening exams by submitting data to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)-approved American College of Radiology (ACR) Lung Cancer Screening Registry™.

A comprehensive, interactive online education program trains you on how to implement a safe and effective lung cancer screening program, allowing you to earn credits toward Lung Cancer Screening Center physician continuing medical education (CME) needs. Several related sessions will be offered at ACR 2016™, the all-member ACR annual meeting, May 15–19 in Washington, DC. These include advancing the practice of lung cancer screening and developing an effective lung cancer screening team.

Some other educational opportunities are listed below:

We’re in a new era for lung cancer detection, seeing the transition from the efficacy of lung cancer screening shown in clinical trials to effectiveness in clinical practice. How are you improving your practice?

Contact information is provided for questions about the Lung Cancer Screening  Registry or LungRads or billing/reimbursement.