The Medicare Access to Radiology Care Act (MARCA)
The American College of Radiology® (ACR®) actively opposes imaging supervision or interpretation by non-physician providers. In 2002, to meet growing imaging demand and optimize radiologist workload, the ACR worked with radiologic technologist societies to create the Registered Radiologist Assistant (RRA) profession. The ACR continues to work with these societies to ensure that RRAs work as part of a radiologist-led team.
The Medicare Access to Radiology Care Act (MARCA), introduced by U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA), would provide Medicare reimbursement to radiologists and practices for services provided by RRAs under the supervision of radiologists. RRAs must practice under the supervision of a radiologist.
The legislation does not provide for independent practice by RRAs nor direct reimbursement to RRAs or for RRA efforts supporting other specialties. RRAs do not interpret images, nor prescribe medications or therapies.
Current Payment for RRA Services
RRAs were recognized by Medicare in 2019 to perform diagnostic imaging services under direct radiologist supervision.
However, radiology practices that employ RRAs cannot submit claims for procedures or other services RRAs perform for supervising radiologists in hospitals where they normally work.
Radiologists also cannot bill Medicare for procedures that RRAs could perform in the office setting where the study is not “incident to” the radiologist.