We appreciate the opportunity to appear and comment on our article “Alphabet Soup: Our Government ‘In-Action'” in the AJNR News Digest. The United States spends more money on health care than any nation on earth. The legislative and commentary landscape is replete with scores of bills and opinion pieces on the Affordable Care Act. As radiologists we are faced with particular scrutiny, and what often can turn into draconian cuts to our reimbursement and hence practice.
While the authors would have preferred HHS and CMS to take the concerns raised by the GAO seriously with resultant policy action, we nonetheless believed there were issues readers of AJNR needed to learn more about. This article provided an opportunity to demonstrate the interplay between various governmental organizations and how, despite good intentions, things that might be considered policy mistakes (eg, permitting self-referral to physician-owned imaging centers) become entrenched without being corrected.
To that end, feedback on the article has been strong with many readers of AJNR indicating their thoughts on policy changes facing providers. The majority of the authors are active with socioeconomic activities of various societies, including but not limited to the ASNR and ACR. Interested readers are directed to an AJNR podcast where co-authors Drs. Donovan and Nicola discuss the article.
We the authors encourage any interested reader of this article or this News Digest to avail themselves of the activities of the Health Policy Committee of the ASNR. For further information, please contact Rahul Bhala.