ASCA News Digest (June 21, 2016)

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June 21, 2016

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AW0379-PolicyStat Sponsored Content  

ASCA Highlights


Time Running out to Submit ASCA 2016 CE Hours Online

If you attended ASCA 2016 in Dallas, you have until Thursday, June 30, to submit your continuing education (CE) credits online. To submit online, you will need your ID number located on the back of your attendee badge. If you no longer have your badge, you can request your ID number by sending an email to registration@ascassociation.org.
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Around the world, two billion people lack access to surgical care and many more struggle to find and pay for it, according to an article in the June 2015 issue of The Lancet. Visit the new ASC Focus web site to learn how you can join Partners In Health and ASCA and help provide surgical services to those in need.
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If you are looking to fill a position in your ASC, go to ASCA’s Career Center, a site dedicated to connect ASCs and job-seeking health care professionals. Through Thursday, June 30, you can save up to 25 percent on a video job listing with the offer code AM16DV, or 20 percent on a featured listing using the code AM16FJ.
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Let us know what you would like to see at ASCA 2017, May 3–6, in Washington, DC. Your ideas for session topics and speakers help us determine what educational content will be most meaningful to attendees. Topic and speaker submissions for ASCA 2017 will be accepted through July 31, 2016.
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Order the entire package of all of the ASCA 2016 session recordings on ASCA's Learning Center. If you could not make it to the meeting or were unable to attend every session that you wanted, here is your chance to order session recordings to access all of the educational content that the conference had to offer.
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4.1 PharMEDium  

Why 503B compounding makes sense?

PharMEDium is the leading provider of pharmacy-outsourced, ready to use compounded sterile preparations.  PharMEDium helps to:  mitigate medication supply issues, enhance patient safety efforts, reduce drug waste and simplify regulatory compliance.  PharMEDium, part of AmerisourceBergen, serves 3,000+ hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers through our state-of-the-art FDA Registered 503B Outsourcing Facilities.


ASCA has introduced a new and more convenient online payment system for its Regulatory Training Series. You can now purchase all 21 interactive courses through ASCA’s web site and start earning continuing education (CE) credits year round right from your computer.
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ASCA sponsored a congressional briefing on Tuesday, June 14, to release results of a new study demonstrating that ASCs reduce outpatient surgery costs for commercially insured patients by $38 billion each year. The study also concludes that $5 billion of that savings goes directly to patients through lower deductibles and coinsurance payments.
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Industry News


Study: Employers Save Billions at ASCs Over Hospital Outpatient Settings
Modern Healthcare (06/20/16) Barkholz, Dave

Employers and consumers could save billions by shifting more surgeries out of hospital outpatient settings to ambulatory surgery centers, according to a new study by Healthcare Bluebook. Commercial payers save $38 billion annually when patients get care in ASCs, Healthcare Bluebook found.
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Operators of Outpatient Facilities Want NJ to Consolidate Oversight
NJ Spotlight (06/16/16) Stainton, Lilo H.

Nearly seven out of ten patients who are referred for a colonoscopy, cataract surgery, knee operation, or scores of other minor but invasive procedures have the treatment performed in outpatient facilities as opposed to hospital operating rooms. Over the past four decades a growing percentage of this work is handled by ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs)--free-standing facilities with no more than a handful of operating rooms--that are able to provide lower-cost treatments in a setting patients often find more comfortable.
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Envision to Merge With AmSurg to Create Health Services Giant
Bloomberg (06/15/16) Tracer, Zachary

Envision Healthcare Holdings Inc. and AmSurg Corp. agreed to merge in an all-stock deal that will create a super-sized U.S. provider of physicians and health-care services with a combined enterprise value of $15 billion. Envision's investors will own about 53 percent of the combined firm, which will be called Envision Healthcare Corp.
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5.2 Sponsored Content  
Affiliate News:
Surgical Care Affiliates Partners With Naperville Surgical Centre
Globe Newswire (06/15/16)

Surgical Care Affiliates, Inc. has partnered with Naperville Surgical Centre, a joint venture owned by Advocate Health Care ("Advocate") and DuPage Medical Group ("DMG"). Advocate and SCA entered a joint venture to acquire and develop a surgery center network in early 2015.
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Antitrust Regulators Worry About Proposed Cigna-Anthem Merger
Reuters (06/19/16) Campos, Rodrigo

U.S. antitrust regulators are concerned about health insurer Anthem Inc's proposed acquisition of Cigna Corp and not sure the companies can offer enough concessions to maintain competition in the industry, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday. Both companies have scheduled meetings this week with top U.S. Department of Justice officials, the Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
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Physicians Are Guiding New Payment System, CMS Chief Says
AMA Wire (06/13/2016) Parks, Troy

In the effort to design the new Medicare payment system, Andy Slavitt, acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), said that the driving factor behind many of the changes was physician input—and the proposed rule attempts to reflect that. But the physician's role does not stop there.
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AMA Adds New Tools to Combat Opioids
AMA News Release (06/15/16)

The American Medical Association (AMA) adopted new policies this week at its annual meeting to reverse the country's opioid epidemic. The new policies encourage physicians to co-prescribe naloxone to patients at risk of an overdose; promote timely and appropriate access to non-opioid and non-pharmacologic treatments for pain; and support efforts to delink payments to health care facilities with patient satisfaction scores relating to the evaluation and management of pain.
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Screen Flashes and Pop-Up Reminders: 'Alert Fatigue' Spreads Through Medicine
Kaiser Health News (06/15/16) Luthra, Shefali

Some people receive constant reminders on their personal smartphones: birthdays, anniversaries, doctor's appointments, social engagements. At work, their computers prompt them to meet deadlines, attend meetings and have lunch with the boss.
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NC Certificate of Need Repeal Gets Hearing; Future Uncertain
Associated Press (06/14/16) Robertson, Gary D.

Legislation to repeal North Carolina's certificate of need requirements before building hospitals and other medical centers and purchasing high-tech diagnostic equipment got support Tuesday from some physicians and conservative activists in a Senate committee. It's unclear, however, if Senate Republicans will try to push through their chamber this year the legislation, which is opposed intensely by the North Carolina Hospital Association.
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State Pulls Plug on NH Certificate of Need Board
NH Business Review (06/15/16) Sanders, Bob

The state's Certificate of Need board is scheduled to hold its last meeting on Thursday prior to disbanding at the end of the month. The demise of the board raises the question: Will there be a boom in health care facility expansion, both in equipment and construction, when there won't be any board judging whether such things are needed?
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Better Outcomes for Dually Eligible Older Adults through Integrated Care
CMS Blog (06/16/16) Cavanaugh, Sean; Engelhardt, Tim; Wachino, Vikki

For decades policymakers have hypothesized that better integration of Medicare and Medicaid services could help improve health outcomes for people enrolled in both programs. Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has focused on promoting integrated care and developing new payment and service delivery models for dually eligible beneficiaries.
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