ASCA News Digest (May 23, 2017)

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May 23, 2017


ASCA Highlights

Industry News

Crisis Focus  

Is your Surgery Center ready for November 15?

This is the deadline for compliance with the new CMS Emergency Preparedness Rule.

Crisis Focus can help you:

  • Access a complimentary Compliance Checklist specific to Ambulatory Surgery Centers.
  • Learn the key elements for compliance and how to implement them.
  • Receive discounts on training and resources as an ASCA member with code ASCA17.

Learn more from experts in the health care emergency preparedness field.

ASCA Highlights

ASCA has released the results of its 2017 Salary and Benefits Survey. The survey, which was open to all ASCs and was conducted between February 1 and March 31, collected national, regional and state data on 20 ASC positions. ASCs that completed 40 percent or more of the survey receive personalized results for free; results also are available for purchase for ASCs that did not participate. Access or purchase results.
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All you need is an Internet connection to attend the ASCA Virtual Career Fair on Thursday, June 15. Don't miss out on this one-of-a-kind event for ambulatory surgery professionals, where interviews are conducted via instant message or Skype. The ASCA Virtual Career Fair is free for job-seekers. Register today.
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ASCA is accepting submissions for topics and speakers for ASCA 2018, to be held April 11–14, 2018, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, Massachusetts. Please send in your suggestions by July 31.
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Word of mouth is a proven way to refer membership to your peers. ASCA will award a $25 gift card to every member who recruits a new ASC to join the association. Any individual working in an ASC that is a member of ASCA is eligible to participate. Learn more.
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ASCA has formed an affinity partnership with SPH Analytics for the new Outpatient and Ambulatory Surgery Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (OAS CAHPS®) Survey. To further benefit our members, we have negotiated with this company to offer special discounted OAS CAHPS rates that include complete survey administration, submission and innovative dashboard analytics. Learn more.
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TRSA Showcase   Resources for Environmental Safety in Outpatient Care

Download this interactive guide to improve practices in infection control to protect patients, staff and the public from environmental pathogens. Hygienically Clean Healthcare certified laundries are providing you with this PDF with hyperlinks for easy access to CDC resources.

With sadness and condolences to his family, ASCA announces the passing of John Burke, past president and chief executive officer of the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). Burke retired from AAAHC in 2015 after 18 years with the organization and more than 40 years in health care. His many achievements during his time at AAAHC included increasing the number of AAAHC-accredited organizations from approximately 600 to 6,000, founding the AAAHC Institute for Quality Improvement and launching the first Medical Home accreditation program based on on-site review.
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According to data security experts, it is not a question of if a business will have a cyber incident, but when. As a result, ASCs need to prepare for the possibility of a data breach and be ready to respond if it happens. To learn how to reduce your risk and the cost of protection, visit the ASC Focus website.
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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have released a tool to help physicians determine whether they are included in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). This program is a component of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA), which replaced the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula as the standard for physicians’ Medicare payment determinations. Learn more.
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In the last three weeks, the Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality and Access Act of 2017 (H.R. 1838/S. 1001) added nine new cosponsors in the US House of Representatives and was introduced in the Senate. The legislation, which now has 39 cosponsors in the House and six in the Senate, would change the Medicare inflationary update factor that contributes to the growing disparity between ASC and HOPD payments. Many of the current cosponsors signed on as a direct result of ASCA member participation in National Advocacy Day. Learn more.
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3M HealthCare  
Join us May 30 from 2-3 PM CST for a live education webinar with Donna Slosburg and Melissa Bailey. We will be discussing CMS Ambulatory Surgery Center Quality Measure Reporting Requirements and Regulatory Updates - Review of Current and New Measures Registration. Reserve your space today!

Industry News

Ongoing Transmission of Candida auris in Health Care Facilities
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (05/19/17) Vol. 66, No. 19, P. 514 Tsay, Sharon; Welsh, Rory M.; Adams, Eleanor H.; et al.

In June 2016, CDC released a clinical alert about the emerging, and often multidrug-resistant, fungus Candida auris and later reported the first seven U.S. cases of infection through August 2016. Six of these cases occurred before the clinical alert and were retrospectively identified.

'Routine' Colonoscopies Cost Some New Orleans Patients Thousands of Dollars
New Orleans Times-Picayune (05/12/17) Lipinski, Jed

At age 62, Cedric Valeary had yet to get a colonoscopy to screen for signs of colorectal cancer - the second deadliest type of cancer in the United States. During his annual check-up in December, his doctor told him it was time.

Healthcare Bluebook Provides Quality, Cost Data
Tennessean (05/16/17) Rice, Jeffrey

In response to Dr. Rick Abramson's comments published on April 25, 2017 ­– "In health care, price is not the only factor" – I agree that quality and cost information are both very important to consumers so that they can get the best care at an affordable price. To underscore their importance, research has shown that hospital errors are the third-leading cause of death in the U.S. and hospital bills are the top cause of bankruptcy.

Improvements in Instruments, Sterilization and Anesthesia Set Stage for Office-Based Vitreoretinal Surgeries
Ocular Surgery News (05/25/17) Cimberle, Michael

Remarkable advances in vitreoretinal surgery have occurred in the past 20 years. Diversified and miniaturized instruments have been produced, surgical time has dropped, and most procedures are done under local anesthesia, all of which have made hospitalization unnecessary in many cases.

Kronos Survey Finds That Nurses Love What They Do Though Fatigue Is a Pervasive Problem
Business Wire (05/08/2017)

A new Kronos Incorporated survey titled "Employee Engagement in Nursing" finds that 93 percent of U.S.-based registered nurses (RNs) are satisfied in their career choice. Despite this, nurse fatigue is a substantial issue with 98 percent of nurses stating that the work of a nurse is both physically and mentally demanding.

Intuitive Surgical  

da Vinci® Robotic-Assisted Surgery

Robotic surgery was a mere curiosity until 1999, the year Intuitive Surgical introduced the da Vinci® Surgical System. Today, Intuitive Surgical is the leader in robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery. Surgeons operate through a few small incisions with 3D-HD vision and tiny instruments that rotate far greater than the hand. This technology allows for enhanced vision, precision and control.

What to Consider When Choosing an Outpatient Ambulatory Surgery Center (TX) (05/17/17) Shadrock, Chris

More and more these days, if people need surgery -- even something as complicated as joint replacement -- they might end up at an outpatient ambulatory surgery center, instead of a hospital. Those centers are freestanding and designed to get you in and out on the same day, and often for less money than a hospital.

Sale of Blackstone Valley Surgicare Closes Despite Objection From Union
Providence Journal (05/22/17) Arditi, Lynn

Prospect CharterCare LLC has acquired Blackstone Valley Surgicare, Rhode Island's largest freestanding ambulatory surgery center. The $1.5 million purchase was approved by the state Department of Health last month.

The Joint Commission ... SAFER Than Ever!
Joint Commission Ambulatory Buzz blog (05/17/17) Sanders, P.J.

The Joint Commission's new process for helping health care organizations identify risk and improve their patient care processes--the Survey Analysis for Evaluating Risk (SAFER) Matrix--has been fully integrated with the Ambulatory Care Program's accreditation program since the beginning of 2017. An integral part of The Joint Commission's multiphase Project REFRESH initiative, SAFER's streamlined, innovative approach, applies to all Joint Commission accreditation and certification programs.

Shorthanded Regulatory Board Can't Agree on Surgical Center
VT Digger (05/15/17) Mansfield, Erin

The Green Mountain Care Board says it cannot make a decision on whether to approve a controversial surgical center, citing vacancies on the board. The board is supposed to have five members.

Cut the Noise! New Research Making Hospital Alarms Smarter and Quieter
Vanderbilt University (05/02/17) Wolf, Amy

Alarms are the often the jarring, yet necessary soundtrack of hospitals. But too many conflicting sounds could lead to problems for patients and staff in critical situations.

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