Comparison shopping: Is neuropsychological evaluation more expensive than neuroimaging?

Natalie E. Kurniadi, Jeremy J. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: This study empirically examined if neuropsychological evaluation (NPE) is expensive compared to other diagnostic procedures such as neuroimaging. Method: We aggregated data on charges for NPE and common neuroimaging procedures (e.g., head CT and brain MRI) from hospitals in the U.S. Charges for five-hour NPE and eight-hour NPE were compared to charges for head CT and brain MRI, respectively. Difference scores were calculated between five-hour NPE and head CT and between eight-hour NPE and brain MRI. A charge difference of $250 or less was considered minimal. NPE and neuroimaging charges were compared across U.S. regions. Results: Median head CT charges were $1942 to $2699. Median brain MRI charges were $3103 to $4487. Median five-hour NPE charges were $1855 to $1977. Median eight-hour NPE charges were $2757 to $2917. Head CT and five-hour NPE charges were not significantly different. Eight-hour NPE and brain MRI charges were not significantly different. Charge differences between five-hour NPE and head CT were minimal in 32.3% of hospitals. Charge differences between eight-hour NPE and brain MRI were minimal in 21.2% of hospitals. U.S. regions were not significantly different in charges for NPE or neuroimaging. Conclusions: Findings provide preliminary data on charges for NPE in relation to charges for common imaging procedures. NPE does not appear to be more expensive than neuroimaging and, in fact, appears comparable. Future research might expand the information on NPE charges to include additional settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2061-2072
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Neuropsychologist
Volume36
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

Keywords

  • Head CT
  • Neuropsychological evaluation
  • brain MRI
  • charges
  • cost
  • neuroimaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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