Do stereotactic breast biopsy cuts promote lower-quality care?

01/13/2014 | AuntMinnie.com (free registration)

Medicare's proposed reductions in stereotactic breast biopsy reimbursement will lead to more open surgical biopsies for women with suspicious breast masses, according to some experts. Image-guided biopsies are less invasive and more efficient, causing less morbidity while providing accurate diagnosis. Without payer support, however, clinicians will revert to the older technique. "With these cuts, it's like CMS is driving the wrong side of the horse," said radiologist Dr. Michael Linver. "Decreasing reimbursement for vacuum-assisted biopsies and moving back toward excisional biopsy is the opposite of what we want to do. It's a tremendous disincentive to do the right thing, medically."

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