ASCA News Digest (November 21, 2017)

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November 21, 2017


ASCA Highlights

Industry News

clariti   Patient Estimation and Collection Made Easy.

Making the Complex Easy. How to Create an Accurate Patient Estimate.

Clariti is helping ASCs succeed in the new world of higher patient out-of-pocket costs, more complex payor and employer arrangements, and mandated pricing transparency.


• Combines payor contract, eligibility, and payment history to create a highly accurate estimate.
• Delivers the estimate to your patients in an understandable format.
• Connects your patients with payment options.

At Clariti we do all the work, including loading and managing your payor contracts. Clients are up and running quickly with minimal staff involvement.

Learn how a surgery center could benefit from Clariti. Case Study.

Contact Us to learn more or discuss a no commitment trial.

ASCA Highlights

Attend ASCA's Winter Seminars, January 11–13, in Las Vegas, Nevada, and get the tools you need to make 2018 a successful year. Learn more and register today. Choose from three great programs presented by ASC experts: the new Infection Prevention Seminar, the Regulatory & Legal Risk Seminar and the Coding & Reimbursement Seminar. When you register for one seminar, you can attend any sessions held during the other concurrent seminars at no additional cost.
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Registration is now open for ASCA 2018, April 11–14, in Boston, Massachusetts. Extensive networking opportunities provide the chance to meet thousands of other ASC professionals and industry experts who can help improve your ASC's operations. In addition to networking, take advantage of the more than 60 educational sessions, expert speakers and ample continuing education opportunities. Learn more and register today.
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ASCA Benchmarking subscribers can now access their clinical and operational benchmarking reports for the third quarter (Q3) of 2017. To access the reports, log into the ASCA Benchmarking portal and click the “Run Reports” tab. If you have not yet subscribed to the 2017 survey, sign up today and receive valuable data that can help you improve clinical outcomes, billing performance, and staffing at your ASC.
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3M Health Care  
Are you ready - Normothermia Quality Measure
Data collection period begins January 1, 2018. Having protocols in place to maintain normothermia throughout the perioperative process including monitoring and documenting temperatures is essential. Learn more from your normothermia experts.

Stop wasting time choosing webinars to attend next year, instead, use ASCA's All-Access Pass. The pass lets you pay one low rate and gain access to the entire 2018 webinar series, both the live events and recordings. The cost is $395 for ASCA members and $595 for nonmembers. Save more than $1,000 on the full purchase price. Click here to view the full 2018 webinar series and secure your pass.
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Thinking about taking the Certified Administrator Surgery Center (CASC) exam next year? Here are your test date options: April 14, 2018 (at ASCA 2018); July 1–31, 2018 (at online testing center); and October 1–31, 2018 (at online testing center). The CASC credential is a distinction earned by those in the ASC industry with a comprehensive understanding of the knowledge and skills that the role of an ASC administrator requires. Learn more here.
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With the ASCA Asset Network, save money on the supplies and equipment your ASC needs and sell your surplus stock. The online platform provides a streamlined, vetted marketplace with thousands of new and refurbished items. Benefits include a seller protection program, dedicated buyer program to free ASC staff from time-intensive purchasing tasks and a mobile app. Create your account today.
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In the latest Member Focus profile, a Pennsylvania director of perioperative services identifies tools her ASC uses to help ensure the capturing of all billable items. View featured member.

Member Focus, published on the ASC Focus website, invites ASCA members to share their views on key ASC issues. If you would like to be featured, complete this brief questionnaire and you could be selected for a future profile.
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The American Joint Replacement Registry has issued its 2017 Annual Report on hip and knee arthroplasty data. The report analyzes data on more than 860,000 hip and knee replacement procedures. Learn more by visiting the ASC Focus website.
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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released its 2018 final payment rule for ASCs and hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) earlier this month. Two of the most talked about aspects of the rule were total knee arthroplasty and Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Outpatient and Ambulatory Surgery Survey (OAS CAHPS). Read more.
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Industry News

Facing Saline Shortage, FDA Prioritizes Some Puerto Rico Plants
Bloomberg (11/17/17) Koons, Cynthia; Langreth, Robert

U.S. drug regulators say they'll move some "critical facilities" that make saline bags to the front of the line for access to Puerto Rico’s still-fragile electrical grid, in an attempt to alleviate a U.S. shortage of the critical medical supply. Puerto Rico is a major hub of drug manufacturing and one of the key manufacturing sites for saline bags that are ubiquitous in hospitals and medical clinics.

Project REFRESH Debuts New Accreditation Survey Report - Jan. 1, 2018!
Joint Commission Ambulatory Buzz blog (11/15/17) Kruse, Kay

The Joint Commission's Ambulatory Care customers told us their survey reports were often confusing to navigate. They asked us to redesign the survey report to make it more user-friendly and easier-to-understand.

'Checking a Box' Is Not Enough to Prevent Surgical Site Infections
General Surgery News (11/15/17) Doyle, Chase

Although use of antimicrobial prophylaxis has been shown to reduce incidences of surgical site infections (SSIs), a large proportion of providers fail to adhere to evidence-based guidelines, according to a recent retrospective analysis. The study found that concordance with prevention measures implemented by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is poor, especially when it comes to redosing.

CMS Proposes Policies to Lower the Cost of Prescription Drugs and Combat the Opioid Crisis
CMS Press Release (11/16/17)

Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued a proposed rule that includes a number of changes that, if finalized, will ensure that Part D Medicare enrollees have access to more affordable prescription drugs and more robust prescription drug coverage at the pharmacy they prefer. The rule also gives health plans a new tool to combat the opioid crisis.

CDC Encourages Safe Antibiotic Prescribing and Use
CDC News Release (11/16/17)

November 13, 2017, kicked off U.S. Antibiotic Awareness Week and World Antibiotic Awareness Week. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognizes this week with an updated educational effort, Be Antibiotics Aware: Smart Use, Best Care, to support the nation's efforts to combat antibiotic resistance through improved use of these life-saving medications.

Lawmakers Look at Boosting Information for Patients
WLRN (FL) (11/15/17)

Would-be patients would have the benefit of knowing whether health care providers working at hospitals and outpatient surgery centers go to their own facilities to seek treatment, under a bill that has been fast-tracked in the Florida House. The bill (HB 35), approved Tuesday by the House Health & Human Services Committee, would require a series of measurements of patient safety.

Ransomware and Other Cybersecurity Threats Top ECRI Institute's Annual Health Technology Hazards List
ECRI Institute (11/06/2017)

Health technology safety--from safeguarding medical devices and IT systems against ransomware attacks to avoiding misconnections of enteral feeding components--requires that health care facilities identify the possibility of danger or difficulty with those technologies and take steps to minimize the likelihood of adverse events. Today, ECRI Institute announces the launch of its Top 10 Health Technology Hazards for 2018 list.

Industry Experts Cautiously Optimistic About Trump Administration's Approach to Value-Based Care
Fierce Healthcare (11/13/2017) Minemyer, Paige

The Department of Health and Human Services under the Trump administration has taken aim at the payment changes made by the Obama administration, and some health care industry experts are cautiously optimistic about what the new approach means for value-based care. Michael Chernew, Ph.D., a health care economist at Harvard Medical School, supports the transition to value-based care and told The New York Times that his conversations with HHS officials indicate they're still committed to that cause.

Healthcare-Associated Infections Are Being Used to Highlight Poor Administration Practices
Contagion Live (11/13/2017) Popescu, Saskia V.

Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) pose unique challenges for infection prevention efforts. Because patient care is complex and involves many different individuals, it's not surprising that infections occur; however, there are general prevention efforts that can reduce the risk significantly.

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