CMS selects ACR as accrediting body for imaging providers

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has selected the American College of Radiology (ACR) as a designated accrediting organization for medical imaging facilities, able to satisfy accreditation requirements for providers of advanced medical imaging mandated by the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008.

In order to meet the CMS requirement, the ACR said it will help providers of CT, MRI, PET and nuclear medicine exams who bill for the technical component under the fee schedule be accredited by Jan. 1, 2012. The facilities need to be accredited for reimbursement by Medicare for these services.

The expanded ACR Web site accreditation section features information to help facilities start the accreditation process, according to the college. Also, the ACR said it has increased its staff of certified radiologic technologists to guide providers through the accreditation process.

ACR accreditation is a process of self-assessment and an independent external audit, based on the ACR Practice Guidelines and Technical Standards, which assesses the qualifications of personnel, policies and procedures, equipment specifications, quality assurance activities, patient safety, and ultimately the quality of patient care, according to the college. ACR accreditation also requires that the imaging equipment is surveyed regularly by qualified medical physicists to ensure that it is functioning properly, and that the technologists administering the tests are appropriately certified.