Tags: Cancer | Cancer | screening | medicare | prostate | cancer | prostate

Doctors Who Order PSA Tests Could Face Penalties

Doctors Who Order PSA Tests Could Face Penalties
(Copyright DPC)

By    |   Friday, 20 November 2015 02:19 PM

Medicare officials are considering a measure that would penalize doctors who order routine prostate-cancer screening tests for their patients.

Word of the proposal, which hadn’t been widely publicized, prompted a flurry of last-minute comments to federal officials, virtually all in opposition, a news report says.

Opponents say the measure would discourage doctors from discussing screening for the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) with their patients so they can decide on whether to get the screening test, as many major medical groups recommend.

The use of the PSA test for screening purposes is very controversial.

Since 2012, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has recommended against routine screening for prostate cancer for men of any age on the grounds that the benefits don’t outweigh the harms.

Studies have shown that screening reduces the risk of death from prostate cancers only minimally, if at all, because most grow so slowly they effectively are harmless.

Yet many men diagnosed with prostate cancer undergo surgery and radiation, which can have lifelong side effects.

The proposed measure is part of continuing federal efforts to develop ways to identify and reward value in health care. The Obama administration has said it plans to tie 50% of Medicare payments to such quality measures by 2018.

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Federal officials are considering a measure that would penalize doctors who order routine prostate-cancer screening tests for their patients.
Cancer, screening, medicare, prostate, cancer, prostate, cancer screening, healthcare, costs
206
2015-19-20
Friday, 20 November 2015 02:19 PM
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