June 14, 2012

New in this Issue

Who sets the price of individual medical procedures? American Public Media report.

Webcast of the MonthSeeking CAMPEP Credits for WC 2102? - You must complete survey for each session by June 29, 2012

AAPM Task Group Report

New Report AvailableFull Report of Task Group 125 Radiography/Fluoroscopy Subcommittee, Imaging Physics Committee, Science Council: Functionality and operation of fluoroscopic automatic brightness control/automatic dose rate control logic in modern cardiovascular and interventional angiography systems


Senators Urge CMS to Reserve Radiation Services Pay Cuts Due To RUC Error


CMS Approved Markedly Fewer RUC Proposals Last Year

Meeting Calendar

Chapter Meetings: October 2012

2012 AAPM Summer School2012 AAPM Summer School - Medical Imaging Using Ionizing Radiation: Optimization of Dose and Image Quality - June 24-29, 2012, San Diego, CA

2012 AAPM Annual Meeting 2012 AAPM Annual Meeting : July 29 - August 2, 2012, Charlotte, NC

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AAPM Website Updates

AAPM Response to Lancet Article by Pearce et al - CT scans are an important diagnostic tool when used appropriately

AAPM issues statement supporting H.R. 2104 - CARE Bill

AAPM releases Adult Routine Head CT Protocol Recommendations AAPM releases Adult Routine Head CT Protocol Recommendations

Adult Brain Perfusion CT Protocols Updated

MN Requires Accreditation of Advanced Diagnostic Imaging Services by August 1, 2013

FDA announces a Public Workshop - Device Improvements for Pediatric X-ray Imaging, July 16, 2012

2012 Proposed Dues Changes and Amendments to AAPM By-Laws

Awards & Honors Committee - Call for Nominations

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Senators Urge CMS to Reserve Radiation Services Pay Cuts Due To RUC Error

Three Democratic senators are trying to get CMS to reverse pay cuts for cancer radiation services in the 2012 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule, according to a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The cuts were due to an error by the American Medical Association’s Relative Value Scale Update Committee (RUC). The practice expense relative value units (RVUs) for intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) were reduced by 2 percent from the proposed fee schedule rule to the final version due to omission of seven equipment direct inputs when the RUC panel calculated the recommended pay rate. If allowed to stay in place, the reduction in payment could hurt freestanding cancer centers and the patients they care for, states the letter from Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Bill Nelson (D-FL). “Moreover, a payment reduction does not seem appropriate for this acknowledged error on the part of the RUC,” the letter states.


CMS Approved Markedly Fewer RUC Proposals Last Year

CMS last year accepted nearly 30 percent fewer physician payment recommendations from the American Medical Association’s (AMA) controversial Relative Value Scale Update Committee (RUC) panel than in previous years. The physician specialty-heavy RUC panel has been sharply criticized by family physicians, who recently sent their own payment recommendations to CMS. CMS historically has accepted about 90 percent of the RUC’s physician payment recommendations and last year that acceptance rate dropped precipitously to about 60 percent... [see full article]

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