Nonphysician interpretation of diagnostic imaging jumps 26.9%: Study

A study found a 26.9 percent increase in diagnostic imaging interpretation done by nurse practitioners and physician assistants between 2016 and 2020.

The study, published in Current Problems in Diagnostic Radiology, used patient claims gathered from Optum's Clinformatics Data Mart for diagnostic imaging studies performed in those two years. In 2016, 2.6 percent of imaging was interpreted by a nonphysician. In 2020, the rate increased to 3.3 percent.

Of imaging studies interpreted by nonphysicians, 53.3 percent were radiography and fluoroscopy, 26.1 percent were ultrasounds and 21 percent were CT or MRI scans.

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