ASCA News Digest (August 22, 2017)

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August 22, 2017

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ASCA Highlights



ASCA’s Salary and Benefits Survey has the information you need to make sure your ASC’s compensation packages are competitive as you plan budgets and staffing for 2018. This resource provides national, regional and state data for 20 ASC positions and allows you to benchmark your facility against others based on characteristics such as specialty, number of employees and type of ownership. ASCA members pay $299 for the results and nonmembers pay $599. Purchase results.
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If you plan to take the Certified Administrator Surgery Center (CASC) exam in October, you must submit your application by August 31. Beginning this application period, candidates have the ability to apply electronically. Members of the ASC community who demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the knowledge and skills that the role of an ASC administrator requires earn the CASC credential. Learn more.
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Train your entire ASC staff on the most current regulations and standards of care with ASCA’s Online Training Series. ASCA has partnered with HealthStream to offer this series that includes a collection of 24 interactive courses specifically applicable to ASCs. ASCs that purchase multi-year subscriptions or sign up multiple users receive significant discounts. Sign up today.
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3M Health Care  
Free Continuing Education Credit - Register Now
Join us August 31 from 2-3 PM CST for a live education webinar with Donna Slosburg, ASC Quality Collaboration Executive Director.  We will be discussing CMS ASC Quality Measure Reporting Requirements & Regulatory Updates - Review of Current & New Measures.  Reserve your space today!

ASCA will award a $25 gift card to every member who recruits a new ASC to join the association before September 29. Any individual working in an ASC that is a member of ASCA is eligible to participate. Learn more.
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Physician recruitment must always be on the forefront of any ASC’s plans. To learn how to develop a long-term plan, be responsive to your doctors’ needs and make sure staff is happy, visit the ASC Focus web site.
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OrthAlign

Your input is needed in response to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) 2018 proposed ASC payment rule. ASCA will once again submit comments raising industry-wide concerns, but it is important that CMS hears from individual centers as well. We have developed a 2018 Proposed Payment Rule Comment Resources page to aid you in writing your comments. Read more.
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Industry News


Don't Blame the Surgeons: Long-Term Opioid Use Rarely Starts With Surgery, Study Finds
Los Angeles Times (08/17/17) Healy, Melissa

Don't blame the nation's surgeons for an opiate-abuse crisis that now claims 142 lives daily in the United States. New research suggests that patients leaving the hospital after surgeries or inpatient procedures are rarely the ones whose long-term opioid use started with a doctor's prescription.

Too Few Patients Follow the Adage: You Better Shop Around
Kaiser Health News (08/18/17) Andrews, Michelle

Despite having more financial "skin in the game" than ever, many consumers don't make any attempt to compare prices for health care services, a newly released study found. In a survey of nearly 3,000 adults younger than 65, about half of the roughly 1,900 who said they spent money on medical care in the previous year reported that they knew in advance what their costs would be.

Surgeries to Remove Weight-Loss Devices on the Rise
Reuters (08/18/17) Rapaport, Lisa

Doctors are doing fewer weight-loss procedures to implant adjustable bands around the stomach and more operations to remove the devices or alter them, a U.S. study suggests. Researchers focused on a type of weight-loss surgery known as laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding, a minimally invasive procedure that involves placing an inflatable belt around the upper portion of the stomach that reduces the amount of food it can hold.

CMS Proposes Changes to the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model, Cancellation of the Mandatory Episode Payment Models and Cardiac Rehabilit
CMS Press Release (08/15/17)

Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a proposed rule to reduce the number of mandatory geographic areas participating in the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation’s (Innovation Center) Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) model from 67 to 34. In addition, CMS proposes to allow CJR participants in the 33 remaining areas to participate on a voluntary basis.

The Surgery Center at Southeastern Health Park Offers Quick Care From Caring Staff
Robesonian (08/17/17)

Marsha Rowe keeps a drawerful of hand-written comments from patients at The Surgery Center at Southeastern Health Park. "A lot of times people write things like, 'God bless your team.' 'I've never been treated so nicely' or 'You made me feel comfortable,'" Rowe said.

Mississippi Valley Surgery Center Launches Expansion
Quad City Times (08/14/17) DeWitt, Jennifer

To meet the changing needs of its patients, Mississippi Valley Surgery Center began construction Monday on an $8 million modernization project at its longtime Davenport facility. Nearly a dozen employees -- many dressed in scrubs and all with the distinction of working there since the facility opened 21 years ago -- were joined by the center's doctors for a ceremonial ground-breaking.

Former HHS Chiefs Urge Trump to Stop Undermining ACA
Associated Press (08/20/17) Alonso-Zaldivar, Ricardo

Don't make things worse. That's the advice of former U.S. health secretaries of both parties to President Trump and the GOP-led Congress, now that "Obamacare" seems here for the foreseeable future.

Trump Signs FDA Funding Bill
Washington Examiner (08/19/17) King, Robert

President Trump signed into law a funding package for the Food and Drug Administration that also takes steps to lower drug prices. The president signed into law the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017 on Friday.

St. Elizabeth Healthcare CEO Explains Opposition of The Christ Hospital's Request for ASC in Fort Mitchell
Northern Kentucky Tribune (08/18/17) Hansel, Mark

The June decision by a Kentucky administrative law judge in favor of The Christ Hospital's certificate of need (CON) application was a major hurdle in its effort to open an ambulatory surgery center on the former Drawbridge Inn site in Fort Mitchell. St. Elizabeth Healthcare opposed the CON request and is appealing the decision in Franklin Circuit Court.

VA Medical Center Warning 526 Patients of Infection Risk From Scopes
Buffalo News (08/17/17) Davis, Henry L.

The Buffalo Veterans Affairs Medical Center is notifying 526 patients that the use of an improperly cleaned medical scope may have put them at risk of infection. During a recent review of the disinfection process for the reusable equipment generally known as endoscopes, it was noted that steps in the manufacturer's instructions may not have been followed in some cases by an employee of the hospital.


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