Upgrading to Digital X-ray Improves Value for Imaging Departments and Patients

by Andy Beer on Mar 2, 2016

One of the latest moves toward value-based care is the push for imaging providers to adopt digital
radiography (DR)
. CMS will begin reducing payments for Medicare-eligible film X-rays beginning in 2017. In 2018, payment cuts extend to X-rays performed using computed radiography (CR). With more than 8,500 CR systems in operation in the U.S., this is a big motivator for imaging providers to upgrade to digital.

I’ve talked with many customers who are frustrated with these declining reimbursement figures. I try to Fusion_X-ray_room.pngremind them that this change truly does add value for patients and the health-care system overall.

By upgrading to DR, imaging departments can improve workflow. Digital X-ray images are acquired quickly and then transferred to PACS for distribution. This makes it easier to handle a higher volume and patients spend less time on the X-ray table.

Improved image quality and reduced radiation dose are other key benefits of going digital. Better image quality means a more accurate diagnosis and less room for error or need for repeat studies, which is essential for value-based purchasing and bundled payments, like Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement. Plus, DR’s greater sensitivity means lower levels of radiation, which is an obvious improvement for patients.

The clock is ticking and 2017 will be here before we know it. Now is the time to evaluate your current equipment and see how much revenue you could lose by not upgrading. 

We invite you to learn more about the transition to digital X-ray in our free trend report.

Click here to learn about Siemens’ digital X-ray solutions.

Meet the Author

Andy Beer is the executive vice president at Cassling. He received his business administration degree at Iowa State University and completed the Alternative MBA course at the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Business. Andy is a veteran of the diagnostic and medical imaging industry. He spent 12 years at Siemens Medical Solutions where he gained direct sales and management experience before joining Cassling in 2002. While at Siemens, Andy received a number of company awards and honors, including the Circle of Excellence Award and the Masters Award. He stays involved in the community by donating time to his church and coaching youth basketball.

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