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The issue of delayed readings being not billable is correct.  The only
time a radiology acute read is billable is if it is contemporaneous with
the patients care.  Contemporaneous is define to mean that the interp is
performed in a timely manner while the patient is still receiving care
and can benefit from the reading.  Next day, next shift or even 10
minutes after discharge does not count.

Randy King

Randy W. King MD
Director
Emergency Medicine Residency
SVMMC
Toledo, Ohio 43608


-----Original Message-----
From: Pediatric Emergency Medicine Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Alan L. Nager, MD
Sent: Wednesday, December 18, 2002 6:30 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Radiology Readings in the ED


I recently conducted an informal, on-the-spot, telephone survey to
determine whether Pediatric Emergency Departments get a partial or full
day immediate "reads" from a radiologist for all radiologic studies
ordered.  I was surprised that of the 21 hospitals called, the results
showed the
following:  7 hospitals (33%) had 24 hour radiology readings; 6 (29%)had
formal radiology readings during the day shift only - usually ending
around 6 pm; 8 hospitals (38%) the ED physicians read the films and then
had a formal reading the next day by radiology. A secondary issue is
that, after doing some investigation regarding billing practices, it
appears that delayed interpretations by radiology are considered
"over-reads" for quality control purposes only and should not be billed.

I would appreciate your thoughts and comments.

Alan L. Nager, MD
Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
Division of Emergency Medicine
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