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New government report raises questions about CT scans at Illinois hospitals

Chicago Tribune, July 11, 2010

The information from the government shocked administrators at Edward Hospital. Their doctors were ordering so-called double CT scans — one using injected dye, one without — for patients at far higher rates than other hospitals in Chicago and across the nation. In the process, patients were getting large doses of radiation. The hospital launched an investigation, and physicians began to focus on curbing use of the scans. This is just what the government hopes will happen as it publishes more information on the quality of health care in the U.S., including just-released, first-of-its-kind data about medical imaging. The data release is part of an ongoing effort to shine a spotlight on how well hospitals follow guidelines for care, meet patients' needs and end up saving lives.