NextImage Medical of San Diego Aims to Lower Workers Comp Costs

3/30/10

Insurers spend $30 billion annually on workers compensation claims; lost productivity saps another $60 billion from the economy. San Diego-based NextImage Medical is focused on changing this picture by taking aim at a key bottleneck that adds to costs: delays associated with radiology exams.

CEO Liz Griggs says injured workers face waits of two to six weeks to get an appointment for an X-ray, MRI or CT scan, and to obtain the results—delaying diagnosis and the start of treatment. Time is money to insurers, because sidelined workers receive indemnity payments while they wait.

NextImage has developed a Web-based system for scheduling and managing diagnostic imaging services, and also has assembled a network of centers committed to reducing the delay to 24 hours. Quick turnarounds mean workers can get diagnosed and treated faster, so they can get back to their jobs more quickly. Indemnity payments are reduced.

Liz Griggs

Liz Griggs

Radiologists like the arrangement because it provides them with a steady flow of patients, Griggs says. “This is a win-win,” she says. “Radiologists like to get the business and insurers like to reduce their costs and time.”

The company, founded in 2008, has 50 employees and has received $7 million in venture funding. Koleman Karleski of Chrysalis Ventures, a key investor, said NextImage addresses a critical pressure point in the delivery of workers compensation benefits.

“Over 90 percent of claims filed result in some … Next Page »

Denise Gellene is a former Los Angeles Times science writer and regular contributor to Xconomy. You can reach her at dgellene@xconomy.com Follow @

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