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Patient Advocacy Groups Urge Congress And President To Preserve Access To Medical Imaging

Patients and patient advocates from across the country, in partnership with the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA, a division of NEMA), gathered at the US Capitol. The group calls on Congress to reject proposed deep and arbitrary reimbursement cuts to imaging services that would devastate patient access to life-saving diagnostics, particularly in rural communities throughout America.

The letter says that any “proposal to increase the utilization assumption for certain imaging equipment including CTs and MRIs will result in additional draconian cuts for imaging services. These additional cuts would come at a time when the GAO and other Medicare claims analyses have found that the deep cuts imposed by the Deficit Reduction Act have already significantly reduced Medicare spending on imaging (one analysis revealed that spending on advanced imaging is down 19.2%) and dramatically slowed the growth of advanced imaging services (the same study showed that the volume of these services has grown only 1.9% in the last year). Further cuts will undoubtedly reduce seniors’ access to these imaging services that are so important for detection, diagnosis and treatment.”

Patients and advocates took their case to Capitol Hill to ensure their elected officials understand that medical imaging improves health outcomes and reduces health care costs. And that, as the letter states, “we are deeply concerned that additional unwarranted cuts to medical imaging will hamper our fight against these deadly diseases. Medical imaging is a powerful tool used in the prevention, detection, and treatment of our most serious diseases. We urge you to consider the value that these life-saving technologies bring to patient care as you work to enact reforms that improve the quality and efficiency of health care.”

The thirteen groups that signed the letter are: American Brain Tumor Association; American Pain Foundation; Black Women’s Health Imperative; Brain Injury Association of America; Breast Cancer Network of Strength; Colon Cancer Alliance; Colorectal Cancer Coalition; Kidney Cancer Association; Lung Cancer Alliance; Men’s Health Network; National Ovarian Cancer Coalition; Society for Women’s Health Research; and Us TOO International Prostate Cancer Education & Support Network.