MN health plans limiting imaging use in state

Of late, Minnesota health plans have been introducing new rules which require physicians to get authorization for many imaging procedures. While the rules won't win any popularity contests--particularly given that physicians must work with middleman companies who know even less about them than the health plans--they do seem to be achieving their primary goal. According to new data, such requirements have cut the volume of scans done in the state substantially. For example, large Minnesota insurer Medica saw a 10 percent drop in imaging procedures, as well as a cut in imaging requests that don't follow American College of Radiology guidelines, since it began an imaging crackdown in March of this year. 

Now, hoping to reduce physician resentment and streamline the approval process, insurers and physicians in the state have begun working together to develop a central system offering consistent feedback on whether a given scan is covered.

To find out more about imaging restrictions:
- read this Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report item

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