Medical Scans Waste $30 Billion a Year, Insurers Say

Jul 28, 2008

By Avram Goldstein

July 28 (Bloomberg) -- Insurers, led by WellPoint Inc. and Magellan Health Services Inc., are increasingly rejecting imaging procedures recommended by U.S. doctors as the companies work to trim $30 billion a year they say is wasted on the tests.

CT and MRI scans that allow doctors to peer inside the body can cost as much as $2,000 each. Almost 50 percent of scans for some conditions fail to improve patients' diagnoses or treatment, according to a report issued today by America's Health Insurance Plans, a Washington-based trade group.