Texas Governor Signs Legislation Requiring Insurers To Cover Digital Breast Tomosynthesis For Women Older Than 35 Without Co-Payment.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017
June 28, 2017 -- Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas has signed legislation requiring insurance providers to cover digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) for women older than 35, with no co-payment.

HB 1036 was introduced in January of this year by Rep. Senfronia Thompson. It will go into effect on September 1.


U.S. physicians move to more flexible mammogram schedule

Friday, June 23, 2017

(Reuters Health) - Women at average risk for breast cancer should be offered screening mammograms every year or two starting at age 40 and they should start regular screening no later than age 50, an influential U.S. group of obstetricians and gynecologists said on Thursday.

Amid divided expert opinions on whether more screenings are beneficial, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which previously recommended yearly screenings starting at age 40, wants to stress shared decision-making between women and their doctors based on their personal preferences in the new, more flexible schedule.

The updated recommendation is more in line with other prominent organizations, including the American Cancer Society and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.

"We want women to feel empowered that they are participants in this process and that their values and preferences are an important part of the decision-making process," said Dr. Christopher Zahn, who is ACOG'S vice president of practice.

Many Radiologists Think Time Spent on The Phone With Referring Physicians Is Excessive, While Many Referring Physicians Think the Time Was Well Spent or Want More Time, Study Suggests

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Aunt Minnie (6/22, Forrest) reports many radiologists think their phone calls with referring physicians “are excessive,” while many referring physicians appreciate the calls, according to a study presented at the American College of Radiology annual meeting. The study found that almost “half of surveyed radiologists felt they made too many calls, while none of them felt the rate of communication was insufficient,” but “only 1.3% of referring physicians thought the frequency of direct communication was excessive, and the vast majority felt the rate of calls was either appropriate or they desired more contact.”

Not Performing Chest CT on Individuals With Stage I or II Breast Cancer Would Miss Few Pulmonary Metastases, Research Suggests

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Aunt Minnie (6/21) reports that research suggests “not performing chest CT on patients with stage I or II breast cancer would miss very few pulmonary metastases, while significantly reducing healthcare spending and avoiding a significant number of false positives.” The findings were published in the Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. 

Breast MR Hits Benchmarks in Community Practice

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Aunt Minnie (6/15, Yee) reports that, while "breast MRI has been shown to perform well as an adjunct to screening mammography in women at high risk for breast cancer... its efficacy has mostly been evaluated based on trials at academic centers rather than community practices." However, a study published online in Radiology found that screening MRI met most of the American College of Radiology's BI-RADS benchmarks - helping to fill a gap in the medical literature on screening MRI performance in clinical practice.