Frequently Asked Questions

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Radiology Questions And Answers

Q: What is Radiology?

A: Radiology refers to the branch of medicine using x-rays, radiopharmaceuticals, magnetic resonance and ultrasound to create images (pictures) of the body that are used to help in the diagnosis and treatment of disease or injury. Interventional radiology is a subspecialty of radiology that uses medical imaging to diagnose and guide the treatment of medical conditions throughout the body percutaneously (via needle-puncture of the skin). Many of the procedures now performed by interventional radiologists have eliminated or reduced the need for surgery.
Not all radiology procedures involve the use of ionizing radiation, such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance. Examinations that do require ionizing radiation are performed at closely monitored levels considered safe. The use of ionizing radiation in children is a special concern and one which our pediatric radiologists have addressed with stringent protocols to minimize dose while maintaining exam quality.

Q: What is a Radiologist?

A: A radiologist is a Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine who has completed college, medical school, and a residency program in radiology and is specifically trained to interpret medical images. The radiologist provides a written report to the patient’s referring physician. This helps the patient’s doctor determine a diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.
All of our radiologists at HPRA are board-certified by the American Board of Radiology. Many have completed additional subspecialty training by participating in a Fellowship program beyond their residency and/or have obtained a Certificate of Added Qualification in their respective subspecialty.

Q: What kinds of medical imaging techniques are used in radiology?

A: A number of techniques and procedures are used to capture medical images. X-rays have been used for over 100 years and remain the most familiar and most widely used form of medical imaging. Over the decades, radiology has advanced and evolved into a high-tech science using state-of-the-art equipment and new diagnostic and interventional procedures. Some of the most commonly used radiology techniques include X-ray, Angiography, Fluoroscopy, Mammography, Ultrasound, Computed Tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Nuclear Medicine, Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Bone Densitometry (Dexa-Scan). For a description of these techniques, please see our services page.

Q: How are the patient’s medical images viewed and stored?

A: As the practice of radiology continues to advance, so does the way medical images are viewed and stored. Until recently, medical images were developed on film. Today, with the advances in computer technology, radiology is turning to PACS, (Picture Archiving and Communication System) which enables the images to be interpreted, stored and distributed as digital files.
This new technology allows multiple medical images to be sent directly to a computer screen where a radiologist can assemble the images into sequence for interpretation. PACS enables the radiologist to manipulate the images, to maximize diagnostic information, and to provide 3-dimensional reconstructions. It also allows real time consultation between the radiologist and referring physician.

Billing Questions And Answers

Q: I have never been to High Plains Radiological Association, why am I getting a bill from you?

A: The Radiologists of HPRA provide professional interpretations for the radiology services provided at many of the medical facilities in Amarillo and the surrounding communities. Although you may not have had contact with our physicians, they would have reviewed your exam and produced a report for your referring physician.

Q: Why am I getting a bill from you?

A: HPRA bills for the professional services performed by our radiologists, this includes reading your image(s) such as X-ray, CT, MRI, and interventional care.

Q: Who authorized your services?

A: The hospital or facility where you had your procedure authorized the services. Hospital policy requires that a staff licensed radiologist perform diagnostic services.

Q: Why am I receiving multiple bills?

A: You may have had more than one procedure on more than one date of service. Depending on the processing order of insurance payments, this may result in more than one bill.

Q: Why didnʼt my hospital bill cover this?

A: The hospital bill is for the technical component, which covers the cost of the equipment and facility expenses. Our bill is for the professional (physician) component, which covers the cost of the radiologist reading the image or performing interventional services.

Q: How can I confirm this service was performed?

A: If you have questions about a service, please contact customer service at the toll free number provided on your statement.

Insurance Questions And Answers

Q: I gave my insurance information to the hospital, why do you also need it?

A: We make every attempt to obtain this information from the hospital/facility. In some instances, your most current insurance information may not have been received.

Q: Can you re-bill my insurance company?

A: Our standard procedure is to submit claims to the insurance company for payment prior to sending a bill to our patients. Please check the bottom of your statement for messages regarding this bill. You may need to follow up with your insurance company to settle the claim.

Q: Why did my insurance reject this service?

A: Typically, this may be due to member eligibility, benefit level, or other contract terms or requirements. Your insurance company may need additional information from you to process the claim. Please contact your insurance company for further explanation.

Q: Why was I billed for a workersʼ compensation claim?

A: Please contact our office or have your employer contact customer service at the toll free number on your statement as soon as possible to confirm we have the correct and complete information for billing. We will need to have your date of injury, claim number and workers’ compensation insurance name and address. Since there are filing deadlines associated with this type of claim, timely communication is necessary.

Q: Will my insurance company apply this balance to my co-pay or deductible?

A: Please check your Explanation of Benefits (EOB) for co-pay and deductible amounts. You may request an EOB from your insurance company.

Q: Why do I have a payment of $0.00 on my Blue Cross Blue Shield bill?

A: This may indicate the bill was applied to your co-pay or deductible. For more details on your deductible amount, please contact your insurance company.

Payment Questions And Answers

Q: Do you offer payment plans?

A: We do offer a monthly payment plan; this is reviewed on a case by case basis. Please contact customer service at toll free number on your statement to determine eligibility and arrangements.

Q: Why did I receive a bill after sending in payment?

A: Thank you for your payment. It may take up to two weeks to receive and process payments. If it has been longer than this, and you are still receiving bills please contact customer service at the toll free number on your statement.

Q: Iʼm on a payment plan, why did I get a bill?

A: Please check to confirm you are current with your payment plan. Payments not received timely can result in additional correspondence.

Online Payment Questions And Answers

Q: Is there a fee to pay my bill online?

A: Online payment is a service we provide at no charge.

Q: How do I get a receipt for my FLEX/HSA when I pay my bill online?

A: In most instances, your credit card statement along with your billing statement from HPRA will be sufficient documentation.

Q: What if I want to pay multiple accounts at once when Iʼm paying online?

A: Because every statement you may have received may not be from the same dataset, it is important to pay each bill according to the online payment web address printed on each individual statement.