The American College of Radiology (ACR) and major colorectal cancer care advocacy groups have asked the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to open a national coverage determination (NCD) for CT colonography (CTC or virtual colonoscopy). The ACR with the Colon Cancer Alliance, Colon Cancer Coalition, Prevent Cancer Foundation and other stakeholders are urging CMS to cover seniors for this American Cancer Society-recommended screening exam.
Recent United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) colorectal cancer (CRC) screening recommendations assigned an “A” grade to colorectal cancer screening, including virtual colonoscopy and other tests. Under the Affordable Care Act, this “A” rating would require insurers that take part in insurance exchanges to cover virtual colonoscopy without patient cost sharing.
Studies performed in the United States and abroad show that CTC increases screening rates – which can save thousands more lives each year. A major study shows that screening Medicare patients with virtual colonoscopy would reduce CRC screening costs by 29 percent and save Medicare up to $1.7 billion per screening cycle.
The College will keep members informed as CT colonography coverage moves forward.
The ACR offers numerous CTC resources online. Find more virtual colonoscopy (CT colonography) information at RadiologyInfo.org.