PPO Ratings - Testing for Cause of Back Pain
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Testing for Cause of Back Pain 2017-18 Edition

Learn more about these ratings.

Why is it important to test for the cause of back pain?

Low back pain is one of the most common reasons people go to the doctor or miss work. It can come on suddenly or it can develop slowly. Because there are many different sources of back pain, it is important to understand the cause of your back pain to make sure you get the right care and treatment.

How should doctors test for the cause of back pain?

To test the cause of your back pain, your doctor should examine your back and assess your ability to sit, stand, walk, and lift your legs. This exam helps your doctor understand why you have back pain. Usually you do not need to have tests like an MRI or a CT scan, or other x-rays when you are first diagnosed.

Talk with your doctor and health plan to find out about what other services are available. Many health plans offer additional support and resources for patients with back pain. These additional services may be educational materials (online and in print), therapy, classes or support groups, or phone counseling.

What do the scores mean?

The scores show how well each health plan did at making sure patients with low back pain did not receive unnecessary imaging studies, according to recommended standards of care. The higher score means more patients got the right care at the right time.

The scores are based on information from at least 30 PPO member administrative records in 2015.

When comparing plans, small differences between scores are expected. The larger differences are important.

Testing for Cause of Back Pain

UnitedHealthcare Insurance Co., Inc. - PPO 84% Horizontal bar, 84.0 units Horizontal bar, 84.0 units
Aetna PPO 82% Horizontal bar, 82.0 units  
Cigna PPO 80% Horizontal bar, 80.0 units  
Blue Shield of California/Blue Shield Life PPO 79% Horizontal bar, 79.0 units  
Anthem Blue Cross PPO 76% Horizontal bar, 76.0 units  
Health Net Life Insurance Company - PPO 72% Horizontal bar, 72.0 units  
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  Score for top health plans nationwide 82% Score that ranks a health plan in the top 10% of all commercial health plans in the US.  
Data Disclaimer The source for data contained in this publication is Quality Compass® 2016 and is used with the permission of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Quality Compass® 2016 includes certain Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS®) data. Any data display, analysis, interpretation, or conclusion based on these data is solely that of the authors, and NCQA specifically disclaims responsibility for any such display, analysis, interpretation, or conclusion. Quality Compass is a registered trademark of NCQA. CAHPS® is a registered trademark of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

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