United Healthcare Update Elevates Coronary CTA to First-Line Test for Patients With Stable Chest Pain
Arlington, VA (May 13, 2020) — Effective April 1, 2020, United Healthcare updated its policy coverage to include reimbursement for coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) as a first-line test for patients with stable chest pain and low to intermediate risk of coronary artery disease (CAD).
“The favorable policy update shows that United Healthcare recognizes the accumulating evidence demonstrating coronary CTA’s ability to accurately diagnose both non-obstructive and obstructive CAD, as well as lead to improved patient outcomes” said Ron Blankstein MD, MSCCT, president of SCCT.
United Healthcare’s policy update will make it easier for providers to offer a coronary CTA ahead of a stress test for qualifying patients. As part of the stress test pre-authorization process, providers will be prompted to instead utilize coronary CTA. If the provider accepts the suggestion, they will receive automatic approval and an authorization number for the coronary CTA. If the provider insists on the stress test, they must go through the normal prior-authorization process.
For this new policy the following tests are considered damage tests:
- Nuclear Stress
- Stress Echocardiogram
- PET Stress
Per the updated policy , “United will reimburse for Coronary CT Angiograms when ordered to evaluate stable chest pain in members with low and intermediate risk for coronary artery disease (CAD) as first-line testing. Computed tomographic angiography (CTA) is expected to replace the need for other functional stress testing in this population.”
About the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
Founded in 2005, the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (SCCT) is the international professional society devoted to improving health outcomes through effective use of cardiovascular computed tomography (CCT), with members from over 85 countries. SCCT is a community of physicians, scientists and technologists advocating for access, research, education and clinical excellence in the use of CCT. For more information, please visit www.SCCT.org.
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