Legislation, Regulations and Advocacy

Legislation, Regulations and Advocacy
The Medicare Access to Radiology Care Act (MARCA)

The Medicare Access to Radiology Care Act of 2021 was introduced June 1, 2021, by U.S. Reps. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania and John Curtis of Utah as House Resolution 3657 with companion legislation, Senate Bill 2641, introduced on Aug. 5 by Sen. John Boozman and cosponsors Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Sen. Steven Daines of Montana. These bills propose a law that amends Medicare reimbursement policy for radiologist assistants to align it with state radiologist assistant licensure laws.

The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, American Society of Radiologic Technologists, and the Society for Radiology Physician Extenders are working together to support enactment of H.R. 3657 and S. 2641.

The legislation would ensure that, regardless of the setting in which the radiology service is performed - hospital, critical access hospital, ambulatory surgical center or any other facility setting - that services provided by a radiologist assistant, supervised by a radiologist as part of a radiologist-led patient care team receive complete Medicare reimbursement. By not separating radiologist assistant reimbursement policies into different payment categories by service location, the adoption of MARCA would enable radiologists to devote more focused time to reviewing and interpreting complex medical images or urgent cases, thus increasing patients’ access to care. RAs will be able to work more efficiently, and Medicare patients will receive care from qualified RAs, regardless of the facility in which their procedure takes place.

The radiologist assistant is a certified radiographer who has completed advanced education, clinical experience and certification to be able to expertly and safely perform radiologic assessments and certain procedures that traditionally were performed only by radiologists.