KLAS: Teleradiology market shifting
Teleradiology Solutions is the number one ranked teleradiology firm in the U.S., according to a new KLAS report titled “Teleradiology Services 2011: Times are Changing.”

The report also said Teleradiology Solutions has the quickest turnaround times of the nationally ranked vendors, and that turnaround time has become a critical issue this year.

KLAS, an Orem, Utah-based research firm that specializes in monitoring healthcare vendors, said a major goal of the report was to track changes in the teleradiology landscape, particularly in the wake of Virtual Radiologic’s (vRad) acquisition of NightHawk.

"The NightHawk acquisition directly affected the largest customer base of teleradiology," Emily Crane, KLAS research director and author of the report, said in a statement. "Many NightHawk customers have reported challenges with turnaround times, and reading physicians have struggled with the transition to vRad's technology since the acquisition.”

Crane also noted that vRad was ranked number one in KLAS’ 2010 report, but its scores dipped slightly after bringing on NightHawk’s customers. vRad dropped to third in the current report. Last year, vRad had a performance score of 89.7 and NightHawk scored 84.3. In the 2011 report, vRad and NightHawk had scores of 85.9 and 75.1, respectively.

Almost half of the former NightHawk customers are looking for other options, according to the report's executive summary, though 77 percent of the existing vRad customers plan to stay put.

The report also gives details on some smaller regional vendors that are expanding their operations, including StatRad, ONRAD and Rays, all of which have been gaining momentum nationwide.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Imaging On Call decided not to expand in order to focus on the Northeast region. Its score increased from last year, possibly due to additional resources after being acquired by RadNet, but the score lags behind other regional vendors, according to KLAS.

A number of smaller firms were not included in the report’s rankings, including AltaVista and USTeleradiology.