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Imaging Self-Referrals Don’t Reduce Sick Days, Costs
Health Leaders Media

A controversial practice in which physicians self-refer patients for imaging tests with the doctors’ own equipment does not result in shorter length of illness. And rather than reducing costs, the cost per episode of care generally averages 4% to 10% higher when the physician self-refers a patient.

Those are findings from one of five reports on self-referral imaging published in the December issue of Health Affairs. The articles question current policy and practice that allow physicians to refer their patients for testing with imaging devices they themselves own.