Artificial Intelligence in Medicare: Utilization, Spending, and Access to AI-Enabled Clinical Software

Anna Zink, Claire Boone, Karen E. Joynt Maddox, Michael E. Chernew, Hannah T. Neprash

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVES: In 2018, CMS established reimbursement for the first Medicare-covered artificial intelligence (AI)–enabled clinical software: CT fractional flow reserve (FFRCT) to assist in the diagnosis of coronary artery disease. This study quantified Medicare utilization of and spending on FFRCT from 2018 through 2022 and characterized adopting hospitals, clinicians, and patients. STUDY DESIGN: Analysis, using 100% Medicare fee-for-service claims data, of the hospitals, clinicians, and patients who performed or received coronary CT angiography with or without FFRCT. METHODS: We measured annual trends in utilization of and spending on FFRCT among hospitals and clinicians from 2018 through 2022. Characteristics of FFRCT-adopting and nonadopting hospitals and clinicians were compared, as well as the characteristics of patients who received FFRCT vs those who did not. RESULTS: From 2018 to 2022, FFRCT billing volume in Medicare increased more than 11-fold (from 1083 to 12,363 claims). Compared with nonbilling hospitals, FFRCT-billing hospitals were more likely to be larger, part of a health system, nonprofit, and financially profitable. FFRCT-billing clinicians worked in larger group practices and were more likely to be cardiac specialists. FFRCT-receiving patients were more likely to be male and White and less likely to be dually enrolled in Medicaid or receiving disability benefits. CONCLUSIONS: In the initial 5 years of Medicare reimbursement for FFRCT, growth was concentrated among well-resourced hospitals and clinicians. As Medicare begins to reimburse clinicians for the use of AI-enabled clinical software such as FFRCT, it is crucial to monitor the diffusion of these services to ensure equal access.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)SP473-SP477
JournalAmerican Journal of Managed Care
StatePublished - May 2024


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