To Help Physicians and Patients, Medical Laboratories with BRCA Breast Cancer Tests Are Posting Mutation Data into ClinVar’s BRCA Database

Innovative use of crowdsourcing allows pathologists and genetic scientists to create a sizeable database of BRCA mutations that is accessible to clinicians and patients There’s a new development in the longstanding battle over proprietary healthcare data versus public sharing of such information. Pathologists and clinical laboratory managers will be interested to learn that, when it comes to genetic testing of the BRCA mutation involved in breast cancer, a public data base of mutations is...

Hospitals Generally Charge Self-pay Patients Top Price for Care, but Some Providers Now Offer Deep Discounts for Patients Who Pay with Cash

Clinical laboratories and pathology groups may want to review the prices they charge insured patients versus uninsured patients There is a certain irony in the fact that hospitals and other medical providers typically charge patients without health insurance as much as three times what they charge Medicare or an insured patient. This situation is getting increased media scrutiny, which is one reason why clinical laboratories and pathology groups may want to review their own policies for...

More Doctors Using Dashboards with Real-Time Patient Data—Including Clinical Pathology Laboratory Test Results

Use of electronic medical record systems makes it easier for physicians to create patient  care dashboards Just as more clinical laboratories are using real-time dashboards to manage operations and workflow, a similar trend is happening with office-based physicians. Physicians using electronic medical records (EMRs/EHRs) in their medical practice are creating dashboards that give them detailed, real-time information about their patients. One example is the Marshfield Clinic, based in...

CMS Proposes Preauthorization Imaging Services, a Dangerous Precedent for Laboratory Testing

MedPAC recommendation targets high-cost imaging done in physician’s offices Following the lead of some private insurers, Medicare may soon require preauthorization for high-cost imaging tests—including CT, MRI and PET scans—done in physician offices. This is one of two strategies aimed at reducing payments for Part B physician radiology services that was recommended by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) in its report to Congress in March. The General Accounting Office (GAO)...
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