Our Story

Background on the founder

Dr. Brian Gay is a radiologist with a fellowship in MRI. After training, he moved to Georgia and worked as director of MRI at Northeast Georgia Health System and then as an MRI specialist for Medquest and Northside Hospital, in Atlanta. In 2017, he opened First Look MRI with a friendly team that is passionate about all things MRI. Together, they are working to change healthcare by making world-class MRI services affordable and accessible and putting the patient, rather than the insurance company, in control of their health.

Why we are here

As a radiologist, I've always loved MRI, which is awe-inspiring technology that allows us to see with incredible detail inside the body. Also, it is very safe, with no ionizing radiation like x-ray or CT. Without a doubt, MRI is the medical miracle of our time. So, after my residency, I was excited to obtain an MRI fellowship and learn from the world-renowned MRI master, Dr. Stephen Pomeranz. Subsequently, I moved to Georgia and continue to work as an MRI specialist.

Over years of practice, I noticed a disturbing trend. Hospitals, large health systems, and investment firms began to purchase independent imaging centers and then raised the prices, sometimes by a factor of four to eight! At the same time, insurance companies raised their rates and made it increasingly difficult to obtain MRI scans, often denying the MRI outright or mandating months of physical therapy first. As insurance costs skyrocketed, patients switched to high deductible plans to lower the monthly premiums but then had to pay for the expensive MRI scans out of pocket. MRI, the miracle innovation and most powerful tool in medicine, was becoming ever more expensive and less accessible. Moreover, the big businesses that controlled imaging and insurance treated the patient like a number as they focused on high profits, increased complexity, and protecting laws (i.e. certificate of need laws) to limit competition and keep prices high. But what could any one person do?

Well, I could open a clean, modern, world-class MRI center and keep it simple, with one transparent price for all scans. As a bonus, we would not need a doctor's order since we would not bill insurance. Then, individuals would finally have control over their health with safe, easy, and affordable access to the wealth of information from MRI. They could find answers the same day from independent MRI specialists without the need for permission from a doctor and an insurance company. The MRI would offer peace of mind if it was normal and empower patients to get faster treatments if it was abnormal. Yes, that sounded right! And it would be exciting to help reduce the cost and stress of healthcare while doing what I love.

So, in 2017, I opened the first First Look MRI center in Braselton, Georgia, and other centers have followed. With an amazing team that provides the absolute best service in the world, we are on a mission to make healthcare friendly, affordable, and accessible for everyone.

Thank you for helping to make it possible,

Brian P Gay, MD

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