ASCA News Digest (August 16, 2016)

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August 16, 2016

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ASCA Highlights


ASC Focus Digital Debut: Grow Your ASC

Gainesville Surgery Center CEO and Administrator Andy Whitener knows first-hand how to foster growth for ASCs. His center in Gainesville, Georgia has added close to 40 surgeons and increased volume by 84 percent in just five years. Read about his keys to success on the new ASC Focus web site.
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ASCA’s Salary and Benefits Survey can be a valuable tool during budget season. The most recent survey results include data on 20 ASC job positions, employee benefits and ASC demographics.

ASCs that did not participate in the survey last year or responded to fewer than 50 percent of the questions, can purchase online access to the final results using the "Purchase Results" button on the Salary and Benefits Survey Page.
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Learn how to target the right audience and increase awareness of your center online during ASCA’s next webinar on Tuesday, August 23, at 1:00 pm ET. Speaker Kelly L David, director of marketing and public relations at Spectrum Medical Group will discuss the important do’s and don’ts involved in building and maintaining a successful digital relationship with patients. Learn how to get started, how to keep the conversation going and how to prepare for problems that might arise.
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Last week, representatives from ASCA helped to raise awareness about the importance of colorectal cancer screening at US Representative David Scott’s annual health fair in Jonesboro, Georgia.

At the event, medical professionals answered questions about colorectal cancer screening options and handed out literature explaining the important role that screening colonoscopies play in early detection of cancer, as well as information on healthy living. The event attracted over 2,000 people.
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Industry News


Lakeland Health Performs Groundbreaking Outpatient Surgery
Herald-Palladium (08/15/16)

Lakeland Health recently became the first free-standing ambulatory surgery center in the tri-state area of Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois and one of only seven in the world, to perform robotic surgery using the da Vinci Xi surgical system. The first of four Xi surgeries performed to date at the Center for Outpatient Services, St. Joseph was an abdominal and groin hernia repair by certified robotic surgeon, Dr. Roy Winslow.
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Study Finds More Is Better When It Comes to Hand Hygiene
Infection Control Today (08/10/16)

Hand hygiene is a simple, effective way to prevent infection. In health care facilities, compliance with hand hygiene is high (averages about 80 percent).
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In 'Awake' Surgeries, Surgeons Must Watch What They Say
Reuters (08/12/16) Kennedy, Madeline

A growing number of surgeries performed with only local anesthesia create new challenges for surgeons, according to interviews with U.S. doctors. Surgeries using new local anesthestics that numb an area of the body but leave patients awake, tend to have a shorter recovery time, but can also cause distress and anxiety for patients, researchers write in the American Journal of Surgery.
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Can Health Spending Be Reined in through Supply Constraints? An Evaluation of Certificate-of-Need Laws
Mercatus Center (08/01/16) Bailey, James

Certificate-of-need (CON) laws are among the various experiments policymakers have conducted in an effort to curb the growth of health care spending. Currently in place in 35 states, these laws require new or expanding health care providers to prove to their state government that they are economically necessary and that they effectively limit the supply of health care services
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Cost, Not Choice, Is Top Concern of Health Insurance Customers
New York Times (08/12/16) Abelson, Reed

It is all about the price. Millions of people buying insurance in the marketplaces created by the federal health care law have one feature in mind.
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Physician Shortages Drive Increases in Provider Compensation
RevCycle Intelligence (08/11/16) Belliveau, Jacqueline

The nationwide physician shortage continues to put pressure on health care organizations to retain quality employees by boosting employee compensation and providing incentives to stay at the organization, according to Health eCareers annual salary guide. While physician compensation increased by 2.5 percent from 2015, nurse practitioners and physician assistants also received significant bumps in salary by 5.3 percent and 4.3 percent respectively.
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ACS: Statement on Operating Room Attire
American College of Surgeons (08/04/2016)

The tenets of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) include professionalism, excellence, inclusion, innovation, and introspection. Appropriate attire is a reflection of professionalism and facilitates establishing and maintaining a patient-physician rapport based on trust and respect.
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Teamwork, Communication Training Recommended to Ensure Surgical Safety
EurekAlert (08/05/16)

Patient safety before, during, and after surgery requires an appropriately educated, committed and empowered health care team, according to recommendations being presented today at the inaugural National Surgical Patient Safety Summit (NSPSS). The two-day event, which includes more than 100 representatives from medical professional associations, insurers, health care systems, payers and government agencies, is sponsored by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and the American College of Surgeons (ACS), with the goals of developing surgical care and surgical education curricula standards, and prioritizing safety research efforts.
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5 Cataract Surgeries, 5 People Blinded: What Went Wrong?
Boston Globe (08/14/16) Kowalczyk, Liz

The patients were lined up in reclining chairs, waiting their turns. When the surgery center's anesthesiologist reached her, Kathleen White yelped in pain as he injected a numbing agent into her left eye.
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Iowa Hospitals Use State Law to Stifle Competition, Critics Say
Cedar Rapids Gazette (IA) (08/14/16) Jordan, Erin

Ceiling-mounted microscopes, sterilizers and phacoemulsification equipment sit dormant in Dr. Lee Birchansky's operating rooms — hundreds of thousands of dollars wasted because Birchansky can't get state permission to do cataract surgery in his office at the Fox Eye Laser and Cosmetic Institute on H Avenue NE. Birchansky operated in these rooms for six years, but in 2004 — after Birchansky asked for a change in ownership — UnityPoint Health-St. Luke's Hospital pulled out of the deal.
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Anthem Suffers Setback in Bid for Cigna Decision by Year-End
Bloomberg (08/12/16) McLaughlin, David

Anthem Inc. will go to trial against the U.S. in late November to defend its $48 billion takeover of rival insurer Cigna Corp., a start date later than Anthem said it needed to potentially close the deal by an April deadline. U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington on Friday set a Nov. 21 start for the antitrust trial that she said would conclude by Dec. 30.
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Whistleblower Case Contends Surgical Device Maker Misled FDA — and Patients Paid the Price
STAT News (08/15/16) Kaplan, Sheila

Jerome Lew is a Hollywood screenwriter, and what happened to him could have come straight out of a horror film. In 2009, Lew went to UCLA Medical Center for surgery to relieve numbness and pain in his hands.
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