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Transparent Pricing Doesn’t Curb Doctors’ Use of High-Cost Hospital Imaging Tests

MRI Machine

Johns Hopkins Medicine released a study last week, examining “if doctors who are told the exact price of expensive medical tests like MRIs in advance would order fewer of them.”

From Johns Hopkins Medicine:

In a report published online in the Journal of the American College of Radiology, the researchers found that revealing the costs of MRIs and other imaging tests up front had no impact on the number of tests doctors ordered for their hospitalized patients.

“Cost alone does not seem to be the determining factor in deciding to go ahead with an expensive radiographic test,” says the study’s senior author, Daniel J. Brotman, M.D… “There is definitely an over-ordering of tests in this country, and we can make better decisions about whether our patients truly need each test we order for them. But when it comes to big-ticket tests like MRI, it appears the doctors have already decided they need to know the information, regardless of the cost of the test.”

Read more over at Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Image courtesy thomas23 via Flickr.

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