AAOS Adopts Position Statement on Imaging AUC

At its meeting on Sept. 21, 2013, the Board of Directors of the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) adopted a new statement of principles on appropriate use criteria (AUC) for orthopaedic imaging services. The AAOS supports the use of AUC and is in the process of incorporating imaging in both clinical practice guidelines and AUC.

Recent efforts to close the in-office ancillary services (IOAS) exception have focused on the perceived overutilization of these services, including imaging services. This statement will provide a guideline for the AAOS to effectively evaluating any legislative proposal that attempts to address the IOAS issue through the use of AUC on orthopaedic imaging services. The complete text of the position statement follows.

Principles on AUC for Orthopaedic Imaging Services
The American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) is committed to the highest quality of care for patients undergoing musculoskeletal procedures. Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) is an important step in ensuring the best use of healthcare resources and preventing unnecessary treatments. The AUC specifies when it is appropriate to use a procedure. An “appropriate procedure” is one for which the expected health benefits exceed the expected health risks by a wide margin. AUCs combine the best available scientific evidence with the collective judgment of physicians in order to determine the appropriateness of performing a procedure.

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