A new study from GE Healthcare has shown not only are hospital imaging services associated with lower patient mortality, but they also have little or no impact on length of stay and cost. 

Led by David Lee, Ph.D., senior director, Health Economics and Outcome Research at GE Healthcare, the study aims to contribute further evidence on the value of medical imaging technology in improving health outcomes while minimizing cost of care.

Commenting on the study, MITA managing director Ilyse Schuman said, “Not only does this study help strengthen what physicians, researchers and patients have known for decades regarding the value of medical imaging in improving the way numerous diseases and conditions are diagnosed and treated, it also provides notable findings on the cost effectiveness of these technologies. As policymakers and the health care community ardently work toward improving health care quality and accessibility, MITA encourages lawmakers to consider the role medical imaging can play in both improving outcomes and controlling costs.”

Looking at the experience of patients with private, commercial and governmental-sponsored insurance, the study evaluated the cases of more than one million patients in over 100 U.S. hospitals. Specifically, it found that while receiving a diagnostic imaging service during a hospital admission may be associated with decreased inpatient mortality, there was no statistically significant impact on admission-related costs. 

Results of the study were presented at the 2009 Academy Health Annual Research Meeting in Chicago.