Top 7 Teleradiology Myths
These myths about teleradiology stem from a few poor providers and a lack of awareness of the advanced technology available to modern teleradiologists. Unfortunately, there are some teleradiology companies that are not providing a quality service but it is unfair to judge an entire industry by those companies. Read on to find out the Top 7 Teleradiology Myths and how StatRad proves them wrong.
Teleradiology Myth #1
Teleradiology providers offer decent quality.
StatRad is not providing “decent” quality; our radiologists are providing excellent quality. StatRad radiologists take their jobs very seriously and they would not be satisfied with “decent” quality – they want to provide the highest quality because they know that’s what’s best for patient care. Through the use of advanced technology, teleradiology providers are able to improve efficiency and patient care. Technology has transformed this profession for the better; it is because of this modern technology that we are able to provide such high quality services.
Teleradiology Myth #2
Teleradiology companies are all looking to go public, and will continue to grow by pushing incumbent radiology groups out of their hospital contracts.
While some teleradiology providers did choose to go public and start pushing out local radiology groups, StatRad did not. StatRad is and always has been privately owned. We believe that teleradiology is meant to support local groups, not replace them. In fact, StatRad created a Declaration of Commitment, which clearly states that we will not compete with local radiology groups. We also back up that claim with a non-compete clause in every contract.
Teleradiology Myth #3
Large radiology groups can easily take over night call.
Just because it is easy for a large group to schedule night call, that doesn’t mean it’s the best decision for patients. Night ER coverage is a honed skill set that requires specialized knowledge. Our radiologists can function very well during the fast-paced night-shift with little sleep. They are also comfortable reading a wide variety of studies. Night ER coverage is a subspecialty. Experienced teleradiologists are better at this than other radiologists that are forced to cover the night shift once or twice a year.
Teleradiology Myth #4
The use of teleradiology sends a bad message to others in the healthcare industry that radiologists are lazy and uninterested in patient care after hours.
Night ER coverage is a specialized skill. It’s not a matter of convenience – it’s about doing what is best for the patients. StatRad’s experienced radiologists provide reports that meet the needs of each ER department. Our radiologists take their jobs seriously and they are real, consulting physicians available for phone consultations at any time.
Teleradiology Myth #5
Teleradiologists are forced to read very fast, which means they will make more mistakes.
StatRad radiologists read fast because they have to read fast – our patients have life-threatening conditions that need to be treated immediately. Providing a preliminary read means we are answering one important clinical question, which allows our radiologists to spend much less time per study than if they were providing a lengthy final report.
Our technology allows our radiologists to focus on reading studies by eliminating many other tasks. We’re not just machines reading studies as fast as possible while sacrificing quality in the name of speed. When there’s a critical value, the system prompts a Coordinator to call that in to the patient’s physician right away. The radiologist is already starting another exam so they can provide the fastest turnaround time possible. When a radiologist needs to make a phone call, they can simply press one button on their IP phone instead of wasting time searching for the number. Our technology and Coordinators allow the radiologists to read that fast without sacrificing quality.
StatRad also has a rigorous QA process. Because our radiologists are providing preliminary reads, almost every report done by a StatRad radiologist is overread – which is an unparalleled QA program, even in traditional radiology practices. This provides a constant learning experience for our radiologists and allows us to spot a potential issue very early.
Teleradiology Myth #6
Teleradiologists don’t consult with colleagues on difficult cases.
Our technology makes it very easy for our radiologists to consult with each other. In fact, it’s even more efficient than working with each other in person. Using our technology, a StatRad radiologist would need to click one button to send a consultation request to another physician and one more button to speak to them on the phone. With just two clicks StatRad radiologists are able to look at the same images at the same time – a process that takes only seconds.
Teleradiology Myth #7
Teleradiologists don’t have access to prior images, medical histories or other important information.
StatRad radiologists routinely have access to prior reports and medical histories. As physicians, we understand the importance of obtaining prior reports and other information and we’ve designed our processes to ensure that we get this vital information. Our technology routinely does query/retrieve of prior reports. If that’s not possible, the technologists at the facility will manually get them to us – whether they push them through the system or fax them.
We believe we’re doing it right.
StatRad provides high quality teleradiology services with exceptional customer service. Our team is committed to upholding the highest ethical standards in the industry and forging long-lasting relationships with radiology groups.