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Tip of the week: Learn about imaging accreditation

Managed Care Weekly Advisor, June 13, 2007

Obtaining your imaging accreditation promotes the appropriate and rational use of imaging services, standardizes the level of care a radiologist can offer, and covers a broad range of imaging areas. It can also be a confusing and time consuming process for the unprepared. Follow these four steps to ensure imaging accreditation goes smoothly:

  1. Start early. Expect a six- to nine-month lead time for initial accreditation, which covers a three-year period. UnitedHealthcare (UHC) recommends beginning the application process in June to gain accreditation by March 1, 2008.

  2. Obtain relevant reference materials. Visit the American College of Radiology (ACR) Web site at www.acr.org and the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) Web site at www.intersocietal.org to view the specific accreditation guidelines and standards. Pay careful attention to the step-by-step instructions offered in the online applications.

  3. Get organized. Gather information on the list of all imaging modalities offered at your practice site, existing ACR or IAC accreditation identification numbers, contact information for supervising physicians and technologists, basic information for each unit, and modality-specific unit information. The more organized the imaging site, the easier it is to complete the application process.

  4. Ask for help. The accrediting agencies have technical experts available at 800/770-0145 (ACR) and 800/838-2110 (IAC). ACR is fielding dozens of calls per day from sites seeking accreditation. UHC is addressing questions about accreditation at 800/637-5792 or radiology@customerelation.com