January 20th, 2012

Podcast 142: Really, why are you ordering that test?

The American College of Physicians wants to encourage high-value, cost-conscious care. And so they convened a consensus panel of physicians to list tests that they considered overused or inappropriately used in certain circumstances. One example would be the use of MRI for breast screening in normal-risk patients; another is the use of imaging studies in the diagnosis of nonspecific low-back pain.

The panel came up with about 40 such examples, and the ACP is inviting your reactions (and suggestions for further examples) on a survey available on its website, a link to which is in the list below.

Meanwhile, listen in on a 15-minute conversation with Dr. Amir Qaseem, the first author of the panel’s report, just published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. An editorial on the report cites a Congressional Budget Office study estimating that 5% of the nation’s GDP is misspent on medical tests and procedures that don’t help the patient. That’s fully 25% of all health expenditures! Houston, we have a problem….


Physician’s First Watch coverage (free)

Annals of Internal Medicine article (free abstract)

ACP survey form (free access)

One Response to “Podcast 142: Really, why are you ordering that test?”

  1. Good afternoon, Well, well, all that is highly interesting, since we have the same problem in France, but what will laboratories and specialized people claim if you intend to reduce their income?
    I believe they don’t care about enormous part of the GDP which is uselessly spent.
    Furthermore it is more or less the same when you consider animals.

    Best regards. Jacques Brillot D.V.M.

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