Imaging advocacy group establishes classy new website

May 18, 2009

The Access to Medical Imaging Coalition has introduced an attractive new website designed to inform the public about the clinical capabilities and political controversies that surround diagnostic imaging practice.

The Access to Medical Imaging Coalition has introduced an attractive new website designed to inform the public about the clinical capabilities and political controversies that surround diagnostic imaging practice.

Launched with a heavy initial emphasis on the recent Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services decision against CT colonography, the RightScanRightTime site (www.rightscanrighttime.org) guides visitors through an imaging advocate's view of the field.

The value of medical imaging, according to the site, translates into early, less invasive diagnosis that saves money and leads to better treatment. It shares the experience of Rosemarie Blair, a legal assistant who is incidentally associated with the Colon Cancer Alliance. Blair's decision to undergo CT colonography, possibly because of her group's political support for the exam, may have saved her life. The exam uncovered a kidney tumor as well as several suspicious colonic polyps that were later removed.

The public receives an educational primer illustrated with gorgeous images describing the medical roles played by CT, MRI, PET, and ultrasound. Medical imaging news is aggregated from several outside sources, and the importance of appropriateness criteria, accreditation, comparative effectiveness research, and health information technology are described.

Links to selected articles in the medical literature discuss the role of diagnostic imaging for appendicitis, cancer, cardiovascular disease, neurological disorders, orthopedic medicine, and trauma.

And to cover the political bottom line, visitors are invited to use the site to send an e-mail message to their representatives in Congress supporting opposition to cuts to Medicare imaging services. Separate forms are made available to physicians, patients, and concerned citizens.

AMIC characterizes itself as a collaboration between more than 100,000 physicians, medical providers, and patients' organizations. It was organized in 2006 by medical professional organizations that jointly opposed Medicare imaging reimbursement rate reductions in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005.

The website lists 41 AMIC members including the Academy of Molecular Imaging, American College of Cardiology, American College of Radiology, Colon Cancer Alliance, GE Healthcare, Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance, Philips Healthcare, Society of Interventional Radiology, Siemens Medical Solutions, SonoSite, and SNM.