Three Financial Benefits of Adopting Portable Diagnostic Imaging
The fact of the matter is, medical imaging is one of the most costly elements related to patient care. The American College of Radiology (ACR) reported that diagnostic imaging accounts for 10%, or $100 billion (with a B), of total annual healthcare costs in the U.S. With that in mind, it’s logical that forward thinking clinics would be looking to reduce spend while maintaining quality of care.
Here’s what you need to keep in mind when evaluating next steps for diagnostic imaging investments:
1) Avoid Burying your Practice in Capital Investments
Many practice owners believe there are really only two options when it comes to incorporating diagnostic imaging into their provided services for patients. The first option involves investing in the tools, staff, and space required to provide ultrasound imaging in-house.
When calculating the costs of venturing down that path, there are really two types of spends to take into account:
- The upfront costs including:
The machine (which can range from $50,000 to hundreds of thousands of dollars)
Testing staff training
- The recurring costs including:
Testing staff salaries
Machinery maintenance contracts
The volume of reimbursements needed to pay off this kind of investment is staggering, so unless testing churn is extremely high, it can take years to break even.
As an alternative, care providers can look to third parties to take that burden off their hands.
2) Keep the Patient Coming Back
When practices look into contracting with a third party to provide diagnostic imaging services to patients, they typically think of referring their testing needs out to an imaging center.
This can be problematic in this day in age for a litany of reasons.
Patient retention is a continued concern for care providers worldwide. A study of 3,000 patients done by the Altarum Institute Center for Consumer Choice in Health Care showed that the top two reasons patients didn’t return to their providers were:
- They were looking for better service
- They were looking for better treatment.
Making care convenient and effective for patients needs to be a top priority to maintain a solid base of recurring revenue.
When a patient is referred to a 3rd party imaging center outside your practice, you lose control of the quality of their care, the patient’s care is delayed, and the patient is inconvenienced, increasing the odds that they won’t return to your practice.
To add insult to injury, as soon as the patient walks out the door, so too does your opportunity to capture reimbursement on that imaging service.
Why allow another facility to reimburse on your referred service?
3) Know your Diagnostic Imaging Billing Inside and Out
So we know the capital investment to break ground on your own in-house imaging is staggering, and we’re aware of the immediate and long term financial pitfalls of referring patients to 3rd party imaging centers, but what’s the other option?
The often overlooked solution is contracting with a portable diagnostic imaging provider that comes to your practice, to the point-of-care, bringing all the equipment, staff and materials needed to serve your clients.
Apart from the convenience this provides to your patients, and the increased oversight you’ll maintain of your patients’ care plan compliance, your practice will be able to increase income in an even more immediately quantifiable way.
To the tune of a 47% average revenue increase per patient.
Here’s how it works:
Portable diagnostic imaging providers deliver the necessary reports to support increased E/M complexity and document a greater amount of time spent in order to increase your facility’s per patient reimbursement.
With E/M procedures accounting for 40% of all reported CPT codes, the revenue snowballs quickly.
Interested in giving mobile diagnostic imaging a go? Set up a consult with New Frontier today to get started on a no-strings-attached free trial of New Frontier’s mobile diagnostic imaging services.
About New Frontier Mobile Diagnostics
New Frontier is the Greater Kansas City Area’s newest Medicare-approved provider of in-room diagnostic imaging services for heart, vascular, and general imaging procedures. Our partnership with Healient Physician Group ensures informed, professional analysis, bringing patients access to quality diagnostic care, when they need it, where they need it. For more information, go to www.NewFrontierMD.com.