Professional Component (PC)

Carriers must pay for the PC of radiology services furnished by a physician to an individual patient in all settings under the fee schedule for physician services regardless of the specialty of the physician who performs the service. For services furnished to hospital patients, carriers pay only if the services meet the conditions for fee schedule payment and are identifiable, direct, and discrete diagnostic or therapeutic services to an individual patient, such as an interpretation of diagnostic procedures and the PC of therapeutic procedures. The interpretation of a diagnostic procedure includes a written report.

Technical Component (TC)

Hospital and Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Patients

Carriers may not pay for the technical component (TC) of radiology services furnished to hospital patients. Payment for physicians’ radiological services to the hospital, e.g., administrative or supervisory services, and for provider services needed to produce the radiology service, is made by the fiscal intermediary (FI)/AB MAC to the hospital as a provider service.

Services Not Furnished in Hospitals

Carriers must pay under the fee schedule for the TC of radiology services furnished to beneficiaries who are not patients of any hospital, and who receive services in a physician’s office, a freestanding imaging or radiation oncology center, or other setting that is not part of a hospital.

Services Furnished in Leased Departments

In the case of procedures furnished in a leased hospital radiology department to a beneficiary who is neither an inpatient nor an outpatient of any hospital, e.g., the patient is referred by an outside physician and is not registered as a hospital outpatient, both the PC and the TC of the services are payable under the fee schedule by the carrier.

Purchased Diagnostic Tests – Carriers

Establishes payment rules for diagnostic tests billed by a physician but performed by an outside supplier. For this purpose, diagnostic tests are tests covered under §1861(s)(3) of the Act other than clinical diagnostic laboratory tests. These include, but are not limited to, such tests as x-rays, EKGs, EEGs, cardiac monitoring, ultrasound, and the technical component of physician pathology services furnished on or after January 1, 1994. (Note that screening mammography services are covered under another provision of the Act and are not subject to the purchased services limitation.) These rules apply to the purchased test itself (the TC) and not to physicians’ services associated with the test.