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KLAS report finds Nighthawk customer concerns

by Brendon Nafziger, DOTmed News Associate Editor | October 11, 2011
KLAS' newest report on teleradiology found some Nighthawk customers were dissatisfied since the company's merger with Virtual Radiologic last December, while turnaround times emerged as one of the leading metrics for the industry.

vRad topped KLAS' 2010 list of teleradiology vendors, and while its customers are still largely content, nearly half of Nighthawk's former clients are looking to move on, the author of "Teleradiology Services 2011: Times are Changing" said in a teaser released Tuesday.

"Many NightHawk customers have reported challenges with turnaround times, and reading physicians have struggled with the transition to vRad's technology since the acquisition," Emily Crane, director of teleradiology research with KLAS and the writer of the new report, said in a statement.

And turnaround times, it turns out, are key to helping feed customer satisfaction, KLAS said.

In fact, Teleradiology Solutions, the number one ranked vendor in the report, had the "quickest prelim turnaround times of the four nationally ranked vendors," Crane said. However, KLAS did note that most of the vendors' turnaround times were within a few minutes of each other. And it also mentioned that Radisphere, a group that focuses on final and specialty reads and which had slower turnaround times, was well liked by customers.

Another big trend was going local, with many customers turning to smaller or regional vendors, KLAS said.

In a chart accompanying the release, for instance, KLAS showed that nearly all of San Diego-based StatRad's customers polled were willing to use it again. StatRad, by the way, recently appeared on Inc. Magazine's list of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in the U.S., ranking 3,484.

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