Medicare to Continue Coverage of Heart CT Scans

In reversing a decision made in December, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have now indicated that they will continue to cover a form of Cat Scan that can detect heart disease. The scans act as an alternative procedure to angiography, which is an invasive procedure only performed on patients who show signs of heart disease. There is a growing concern that the CT scans are increasingly being done on patients who show no signs of heart disease.

In an an article in the New York Times, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said there remained “uncertainty regarding any potential health benefits” from the scans and described the existing evidence as of “overall limited quality and limited applicability.” The agency said Wednesday that it would continue to leave payments for the scans up to the local insurance carriers it employs to oversee medical claims.

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