By Robert “Bob” Cooke
It’s a fairly well known fact that the majority of
Radiologists qualify as Eligible Professionals (EP) under the Meaningful Use
guidelines, and thus are eligible for up to $39,000 in incentives if they get
started with meaningful use this year. The incentive is the proverbial penny
lying on the sidewalk.
In a recent RSNA/KLAS survey, 62% of the Radiology
practices surveyed were either “considering” or “didn’t know” if they were
planning to enroll and participate in the CMS EHR incentive Programs. In the
same survey, more than 75% weren’t knowledgeable about the program.
Now, those that do know about Meaningful Use, will tell
you that the path to receiving this incentive feels complicated, and that
adopting and implementing the measures spelled out in the Stage 1 incentives
won't do much to improve the delivery of Radiology services. But don’t forget that Stage 2 is coming, and,
will likely have more relevance to Radiology, especially given the RSNA 2012
theme of “Patients First.”
From the statistics, it would seem that Radiology is deciding
whether to pick up the penny. What if they
don’t? How does a 2% penalty on physician payments from CMS sound if you don’t
Here’s a fun fact, most, if not all of the painful data
entry can be excluded by Radiology if the Radiologist does not “see” the
patient. Here’s another thought to contemplate, there is a tremendous amount of
advocacy and lobbying required to keep the regulatory bodies informed about the
value of imaging — how effective will those efforts be if the Radiology
community is largely ignoring the relatively simple obligations being placed on
them by CMS?
So, what’s the deal? Is Radiology just ignoring the penny
because they don’t know how to pick it up? If that’s the case, there are plenty of people
that do, and it might just be time to go looking for them.
The rest of the rhyme: "Find a penny, leave it be
and bad luck will come to thee."
Professional Biography: Robert “Bob” Cooke is a corporate strategist with over 20 years of
experience in the medical imaging informatics and
equipment market, and is currently working with a number of small companies and start-up
ventures.He is the former former Senior
Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Fujifilm Medical Systems. Bob was also the Vice President and Global General Manager at Agfa Healthcare. Bob's expertise is in
creating growth, designing new business ventures and developing and managing