Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia Takes AIM at Healthcare Costs
Innovative imaging program helps members spend less on high-quality services
ATLANTA – March 1, 2012 – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia (BCBSGa) is pleased to announce the launch of an innovative program that offers members a choice in selecting high-quality and cost-effective imaging services. Using technology from American Imaging Management (AIM), this voluntary program will provide BCBSGa members with information to help them compare the costs and quality of imaging services that their health care provider has recommended.
“This exciting project further reinforces our ongoing transparency initiatives,” noted Morgan Kendrick, president, BCBSGa. “The addition of AIM gives our members yet another way to receive the cost and quality information they need to make the best possible health care decisions for themselves and their families.”
Mr. Kendrick added that the program, which began earlier this year, engages members seeking MRI or CT imaging services in the following Georgia counties: Bibb, Chatham, Cherokee, Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, Columbia, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Muscogee, Newton, Richmond and Walton.
Once a referral is made for an MRI and/or CT scan by a physician at a specific facility, members will receive a call providing them information on other in-network facilities that offer the same imaging services, and how those facilities rank in terms of cost and quality so they can make an informed decision as to where they want to receive these services.
“The cost of advanced imaging procedures has increased in recent years, contributing to higher medical costs,” noted Dr. Mark Kishel, medical director, BCBSGa. “For example, the cost for MRI and CT scans can vary from $350 to $2,000, depending on the region where you live and the facility where a procedure is performed.” Dr. Kishel added that members who pay a percentage of their care, as opposed to a co-payment, could end up spending hundreds of dollars more for a certain procedure depending on where it was performed.
“We strongly believe that our members deserve access to the right care at the right time and in the right setting,” said Mr. Kendrick. “We see this program as a valuable tool in helping our members make more informed health care decisions, and to become better stewards of their health care dollars.”
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia, the largest health insurer in the state with more than 2.5 million members, has been proudly serving Georgians for 75 years.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia, Inc. and Blue Cross Blue Shield Healthcare Plan of Georgia, Inc. are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association®. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia is available at www.bcbsga.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinInBCBSGa, visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin or check out the Our Health Connects Us campaign site at http://connects.bcbsga.com/.
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