Scans and Other Tests

If you are shopping for an MRI, CT Scan, Mammogram or another test…

1) Make sure you know exactly what you need.  Ask your doctor for the name of the test and how it is performed.  Some MRIs, for example, are done with an IV injection for contrast. Tests have specific billing codes.  Some billing offices may ask you for the code so it would not hurt to get it from your doctor,  but be sure you have the full name of the test.

2) Make sure you get the total charge for the test you need.  At some labs you will receive separate bills for lab and physician services.  There may be other ancillary charges as well.  So make sure you ask for the total cost of the bill you would receive.

3) Once you know the price of a test, it’s a good idea to call your insurance company and find out what your actual expense will be.  You may be responsible for the total charge, a portion of the charge or your co-pay.

4) You might ask the lab how it compares on quality or if it is accredited by the American College of Radiology.

5) Some patients want to know about the experience of the doctors who will review their tests or how many doctors review the test results.

6) You can ask how soon you will receive test results and how they will be communicated.

7) You might want to ask long you’ll have to wait for an appointment.

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