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97% of ED Physicians Order Unnecessary Imaging Tests
HealthLeaders Media

Nearly all of the 435 emergency physicians in a recent survey admitted to ordering too many diagnostic tests, but said they did so out of fear of error, uncertainty, and non-medical reasons.

The survey, published this month in Academic Emergency Medicine, focused specifically on the use, and over-use, of imaging tests. More than 85% of the respondents said they believe that too many tests are ordered in their own departments, and 97% admitted they ordered “medically unnecessary” radiology tests, which were defined as imaging the physician ordered in response to external pressures and not for optimal medical care.

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