Step aside, $3,500 Cartier watches and $12,000 Birkin bags. The latest status symbol may be full-body MRI scans, touted by celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and designer Zac Posen.
The scans don’t come cheap and are not covered by insurance for healthy people. Prenuvo, which Kardashian and Posen used, charges $2,499 for a full-body scan. At another company, Ezra, it costs $1,950 for a full-body scan and $2,350 for the “plus” package.
For Northeastern professor Gary J. Young, the use of full-body MRIs among the healthy rich and famous looks like another example of runaway screenings he documented in a 2021 study.
“For people of average risk, the likelihood of detecting anything of any serious concern is very, very low. It’s not a good way for us to use our scarce resources for health care,” says Young, director of Northeastern’s Center for Health Policy and Healthcare Research and professor of strategic management and health care systems. “We have to think about it at a population level and individual level.”