mri near me

“Is MRI Imaging Near Me?”: Don’t Book an MRI Without Asking Yourself These 3 Questions

In September 2022, the typical American household spent a whopping $445 more on the same services and goods than they did a year ago. And chances are that even if you hadn’t had that big of a jump in spending, you have probably still seen a noticeable increase. 

So when your doctor tells you that you need to get a pricy medical test, it can be tempting to put it off for a little bit or to skip it altogether. In fact, according to a 2022 poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, one-third of American adults reported that they or a household member did not get a recommended medical test or treatment in the past year because of cost.

However, delaying or skipping tests can have devastating consequences — especially tests like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). 

Whether you need an MRI that’s close by or you’re willing to travel, you are looking for a traditional closed-bore MRI or an open MRI, or you’re going to use insurance or opt for self-pay, Medmo is here to help you find an affordable and convenient facility that meets your needs

What happens when you skip an MRI

So — why is it so essential to get an MRI if your doctor prescribes one?

MRIs are a powerful tool for diagnosing and monitoring various diseases and medical conditions. They are especially useful for finding serious illnesses or potentially life-threatening diseases, like certain cancers.,

For diseases like cancer where it’s easiest to treat in its earliest stages, it is crucial to find the disease as soon as possible. But if you skip or delay a test, you may miss your opportunity to find cancer and treat it before it grows and spreads. 

Similarly, MRIs are very useful when it comes to determining the severity of injuries and the next steps for treatment. For example, if you break a bone in your shoulder, an MRI could alert your provider that an operation is the best course of action for realigning (setting) your bone back to its correct position and ensuring that it heals properly is internal fixation surgery. If you don’t get the required surgery, you may risk the bone staying out of place or not healing completely — and you might not even know that you need the surgery if you don’t get a recommended MRI.

What to Ask Yourself When Booking an MRI

Knowing the importance of an MRI is great, but it doesn’t solve some of the main barriers that keep people from getting MRIs: affordability, accessibility, and anxiety.

MRIs are expensive, with an average market price starting at $850. Even with insurance, out-of-pocket costs like deductibles and copays can add up. There may be other costs associated with getting an MRI, like gas or transportation to the test, as well. 

Plus, there’s the fact that any medical test — especially one where you may be totally enclosed (we’ll get to that in a moment) — can cause anxiety. For some people, anxiety alone could be a reason to forgo a test.

Fortunately, there are many options for where to go to get affordable, convenient, and even less anxiety-provoking MRIs. When you are deciding where to go for your scan, ask yourself these questions to make sure that you’re choosing the option that’s best for you.

Question 1: Is the MRI imaging near me, or will I have to travel?

Depending on your transportation situation, or how long you can be away from work or other daily commitments, the location may be one of the most important considerations. 

At first, it might seem like a good idea to book an appointment at the least expensive place and then worry about logistics later. But with national average gas prices hovering around $3.70 – $3.90 per gallon (as of October 2022) — an entire dollar per gallon more than the same time in 2019, right before the pandemic, logistics are definitely something to pay attention to. 

If you don’t have a car, make sure that it’s near public transportation or that you have a ride lined up when you’re booking the appointment so that you’re not left in a lurch on the day of your test. 

When you are a Medmo subscriber, rest assured that we’re already asking this for you. When you book your appointment, you will be able to choose what your priorities are. If transportation and location are concerns, you can simply tell us that “MRI imaging near me” is one of your top priorities. 

And don’t worry — even if it isn’t your #1 priority, we’re still taking location into account. We have hundreds of centers across the country and always match patients with local centers. 

Question 2: Does the imaging center offer open or closed MRI?

Not all MRI machines look the same. There are two main types: closed-bore and open.

  • Closed-bore MRIs are more traditional. These machines are tube-like tunnels that contain magnets and surround you.,
  • Open MRIs are newer models. Instead of lying in the closed tunnel, you lay down between two magnets (one above you and one below you). The space around you is open, so you are not fully surrounded.

There are trade-offs between the two. Closed-bore MRIs typically take clearer pictures, but being enclosed in such a small tunnel can bring on claustrophobia. Additionally, people who are overweight or obese may find that they can’t fit comfortably in a closed machine.

Open MRIs are much easier for claustrophobic patients, as well as for those who are overweight or obese. However, open scans don’t always take as clear of pictures as closed ones. 

Because closed-bore MRIs produce better images, we do recommend sticking with the conventional method when possible. However, if small spaces are truly intolerable, getting an open MRI is still much better than not getting a required MRI at all. Our team can help you search for open MRIs near you.

Question 3: How much will the MRI cost? Will the imaging center take my insurance?

MRIs may be expensive, but that doesn’t mean they must be completely unaffordable. Sometimes, it just takes a little shopping around.

We want to make sure that you are getting the highest quality test at the most affordable rate, whether you are going to go through insurance or pay totally out of pocket.

  • Going through insurance: We take all major insurance plans. If you decide to use your insurance, we will make sure to only book you at an imaging center that is in-network. 
  • Self-pay: If you don’t have insurance, or you have a high deductible and would rather not go through insurance, you’re in luck. We have pre-negotiated self-pay rates that will get you the same quality scan with up to 80% savings.

The tl;dr version: It doesn’t matter if you’re uninsured or using your insurance: When using Medmo, you will be able to get an MRI without breaking the bank.

Ready to get started?

Here’s what you’ll need to schedule an appointment

  • 1. Imaging referral / prescription

  • 2. Your contact information

  • 3. Insurance OR card information

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