ASCA News Digest (February 28, 2017)

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February 28, 2017


ASCA Highlights

Industry News

Affiliate News   Affiliate News
        Take some time and thank our 2017 Affiliate Leaders listed below for their continued support of ASCA. For a complete list of ASCA's 2017 Affiliates, please follow the link

    ASCA Highlights

    Final Day to Renew Your ASCA Membership

    Do not miss the deadline to renew your ASCA membership today. Renew by the end of the day to make sure that your benefits are not suspended and that your employees have the resources they need to successfully do their job. Together, we can ensure that ASCs continue to serve millions of patients and provide the quality of care for which they are known. Renew today.
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    ASCA 2017, May 3–6, in Washington, DC, will provide a great opportunity to earn the continuing education (CE) credits you need to maintain your certifications. The main program’s sessions are approved for up to 17 administrator education units (AEUs), 17 nursing contact hours and 24 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). You can also earn up to 8.0 additional AEUs or nursing contact hours by attending a pre-meeting workshop. If you have not already registered for ASCA 2017, sign up today.
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    Make sure your ASC is prepared to avoid citations during surveys by attending ASCA’s next webinar, "Always Be Prepared! CMS and Accreditation Survey Issues and Strategies." John Goehle, chief operating officer of Ambulatory Healthcare Strategies, will cover some of the most common and significant issues that surveyors cite and offer strategies and resources that you can use to avoid them. The webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, March 7, at 1:00 pm ET; the cost is $100 for ASCA members and $150 for nonmembers.

    Note: You can also purchase the 2017 Webinar All-Access Pass, which includes the live events and recordings for all 18 webinars. Members pay just $395 and save more than $1,400, and nonmembers pay $595 and save more than $2,100.
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    Winter Seminar attendees must complete their session evaluations today to request continuing education (CE) credits, nursing contact hours, AEUs or a certificate of participation for last month’s sessions. To receive credit, complete the session evaluations available here.
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    If you have a suggestion for a topic or speaker for the 2018 Coding Update and Reimbursement Strategies seminar, let us know. Today is the deadline to submit your suggestions.
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    Leana D. McGuire, RN, director of learning and development at United Surgical Partners International (USPI) in Dallas, Texas, will present “Communicating in a Multi-Generational Workforce,” at ASCA 2017, May 3–6, in Washington, DC. She will discuss four generations—the Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials—and answer the question, “What makes each of us tick?”

    To learn more about this presentation and discover ways you can communicate more effectively in a multi-generational workforce, visit the ASC Focus web site.
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    ASCA is conducting a brief survey to determine which procedures should be added to the list of ASC payable procedures for 2018. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will soon begin drafting the 2018 payment rule, which will be released sometime in July, so now is the time to submit your feedback. This information will help ASCA advocate for expanding the list of procedures that CMS considers clinically appropriate for ASCs to provide to Medicare beneficiaries.

    Click here to fill out the survey. Please submit surveys by Friday, March 17. Write Kara Newbury at with any questions.
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    One Medical Passport

    Industry News

    Trump Order Pauses CMS Bundles
    Home Health Care News (02/20/17) Stramowski, Alana

    President Trump's recent executive order freezing new regulations has pushed back the implementation of new and expanded bundled payment models by The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) by 60 days. A final rule issued in December by CMS creates mandatory bundled payment programs for cardiac conditions, and expands an existing bundled payment program for joint replacement episodes for Medicare beneficiaries.

    High-Quality Low-Cost Patient Care: Why the ASC Model May Well Represent the Future of Healthcare Providers in the US?
    LinkedIn (02/23/17) Hamilton, David; Jenkins, Devin

    The major challenge dominating the health care industry has always been to lower the cost of patient care while not sacrificing quality. As technology continues to advance in surgery, more procedures can be done outside a traditional hospital setting (such as in surgery centers and physician offices).

    Amid Repeal Debate, Public Views ACA More Favorably Than Unfavorably
    Kaiser Family Foundation (02/24/17)

    As President Trump and Congress weigh repealing the Affordable Care Act, the latest Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds more Americans viewing the law favorably than unfavorably (48 percent compared to 42 percent). This is the highest level of favorability measured in more than 60 Kaiser Health Tracking Polls conducted since 2010.

    Audit Urges Repeal of Certificate of Need Law
    Exponent Telegram (West Virginia) (02/18/17) Casto, James E.

    Like more than 30 other states, West Virginia requires hospitals to obtain a state-issued certificate of need before undertaking new or expanded health care facilities or services. Certificate of need, or CON, laws have been controversial since they first were introduced in the 1960s.

    Study Finds Significant Limitations of Physician-Rating Websites
    Medical Xpress (02/21/17)

    An analysis of 28 commercial physician-rating websites finds that search mechanisms are cumbersome, and reviews scarce, according to a study appearing in the February 21 issue of JAMA. Patients are increasingly seeking information about physicians online.

    Northwell to Acquire Stake in Surgical Specialty Center in Harrison
    Fairfield County Business Journal (CT) (02/24/17) Golden, John

    Surgical Specialty Center of Westchester, a multispecialty outpatient surgical practice in Harrison, will partner with Northwell Health, the metropolitan health care system based on Long Island, in a joint venture that could give Northwell a majority stake in the practice within five years. Northwell today announced it will initially acquire a 20 percent position in the 34-surgeon practice at 440 Mamaroneck Ave.

    MACRA Quality Payment Program's First Performance Period Gets Underway
    Health Data Management (02/22/17) Slobodkin, Greg

    On January 1, the first performance period of MACRA's new Quality Payment Program officially began, with providers looking for guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to ensure that they are ready to participate in 2017 and avoid a negative payment adjustment in 2019. The new reimbursement program for physicians and their group practices looks to revamp how clinicians are paid for services to Medicare beneficiaries, emphasizing quality of care services rather than a fee-for-service framework.

    Surgery Center Hosts Grand Re-opening, Introduces New Docs
    Cleburne Times-Review (Texas) (02/20/17) Glasscock, Todd

    On Thursday, Texas Health Surgery Center in Cleburne celebrated a decade of providing health care to the area with a grand re-opening and open house to show off renovations and introduce two new doctors. Among the renovations and expansions to the center are overnight rooms for patients who might need extra care, said Melissa Dansby, center administrator.

    'Micro-Hospital' Venture Moves in on Profitable Surgeries
    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (02/16/17) Mamula, Kris B.

    A $35 million specialty hospital that's under construction in Lancaster, Pa., is blazing what could be the future of health care by promising big savings with assurances of quality care and patient satisfaction. General acute care hospitals should worry.

    Single-Payer Health Care Bill Introduced in California Senate
    Kaiser Health News (02/22/17) Gorman, Anna

    Legislation introduced in the California Senate last week would set the state on a path toward the possible creation of a single-payer health care system--a proposal that has failed to gain traction here in the past. The bill, which is a preliminary step, says that it is the "intent of the Legislature" to enact a law that would establish a comprehensive, single-payer health care program for the benefit of everyone in the state.

    House, Justice Department Ask for Delay in ACA Lawsuit
    The Hill (02/21/17) Hellmann, Jessie

    Republican lawmakers and the Department of Justice have asked for more time Tuesday to decide whether they want to move forward in the House's lawsuit over the Affordable Care Act's cost-sharing subsidies. The House and the DOJ made the request in a joint motion Tuesday.

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