ASCA News Digest (October 31, 2017)

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October 31, 2017


ASCA Highlights

Industry News

clariti   Patient Estimation and Collection Made Easy.

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ASCA Highlights

Learn how to maximize reimbursements and improve your ASC’s bottom line at the Coding Update & Reimbursement Strategies winter seminar, January 11–13, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Join ASCA for three days of focused, small-group sessions that will examine best practices and help you prepare for the coding and billing changes in 2018. Register.

This seminar runs concurrently with two others: Infection Control & Prevention Techniques for ASCs and Minimizing Your Regulatory & Legal Risk. Sign up for one and attend sessions from the others for free. Learn more and register.
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3M Health Care  
Last Chance!  Free Normothermia Webinar Today!
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. 
Register now for the upcoming webinar on October 31, 2017, with David Shapiro, MD, Maintaining Normothermia in the ASC Patient.

The deadline to submit third-quarter (Q3) data for ASCA Benchmarking is today, October 31. ASCA’s clinical and operational benchmarking program provides valuable performance metrics that you can use to improve performance in areas such as clinical outcomes, billing and staffing at your ASC. If you have not yet signed up for the 2017 program, purchase your subscription now and receive the Q1 and Q2 national reports for free. Subscribe.
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Registration is now open for ASCA 2018, April 11–14 in Boston, Massachusetts. ASCA’s annual meeting next year will feature more than 60 educational sessions designed specifically for ASC professionals, access to hundreds of ASC-industry vendors who can help you find the solutions you’re looking for, networking opportunities with more than a thousand of your colleagues and more. Learn more and register today.
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ASCA has joined hands with One World Surgery, a Chicago, Illinois-based nonprofit that partners with communities, health-care providers and leaders in health care to deliver surgical services globally. To learn more about this organization’s goals and accomplishments—and what you can do to help—visit the ASC Focus website.
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Master the challenges involved in conducting an effective quality assessment and performance improvement (QAPI) project with ASCA’s next webinar, Steps for Completing a QAPI Project. On Tuesday, November 7, Amsurg Senior Director of Regulatory Jan Allison, RN, will outline the steps involved in a successful project and explain how to overcome common problems your ASC might encounter. The webinar is scheduled for 1:00 pm ET; the cost is $100 for ASCA members and $150 for nonmembers. Register.
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In the latest Member Focus profile, a Maryland administrator describes how her ASC implemented a new payment method to help patients who self-pay or have high deductibles. 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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On Tuesday, November 7, ASCA Chief Operating Officer Steve Miller will speak at the 2017 Nevada Orthopaedic Society (NVOS) Reno Fall Meeting in Reno, Nevada. Miller will deliver the keynote address, “Procedures and Payments: Update on CMS Rules,” during the event, which will be held from 5:30–9:00 pm PT.
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Cipher Health   Watch the Video: Maximize Staff Time with Efficient Patient Outreach
Watch the video and see how you can maximize staff time with efficient pre and post-op patient outreach. CipherHealth's Voice patient outreach solution reaches out to 100% of patients with targeted questions and automatically alerts designated staff members for patients needing additional help. 
Watch the video now and see how your center can save. 

Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA) have released their legislative proposal to stabilize the individual insurance markets mandated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). At the same time, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and Kevin Brady, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means, independently announced a plan to fund cost-sharing reduction payments (CSRs). Read more.
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Industry News

The Boston-Area Pharmacist Involved in a Deadly Meningitis Outbreak Has Been Cleared of Murder
Associated Press (10/25/17) Richer, Alanna Durkin

A pharmacist at a facility whose tainted drugs sparked a nationwide meningitis outbreak that killed 76 people was cleared Wednesday of murder but was convicted of mail fraud and racketeering. Jurors said prosecutors failed to prove Glenn Chin was responsible for the deaths of people who were injected with mold-contaminated drugs produced by the now-closed New England Compounding Center in Framingham, just west of Boston.

Millennials Embrace Nursing Profession — Just in Time to Replace Baby Boomers
Kaiser Health News (10/27/17) Andrews, Michelle

The days are long past when the only career doors that readily opened to young women were those marked teacher, secretary or nurse. Yet young adults who are part of the Millennial generation are nearly twice as likely as Baby Boomers were to choose the nursing profession, according to a recent study.

North Idaho Combats Physician Shortage
Spokane Journal of Business (10/26/17) Erickson, Keith

Though it hasn't reached a critical point, a shortage of doctors in Idaho is plaguing the state, which ranks 49th nationwide in physicians per capita. Those numbers aren’t getting any better, some North Idaho medical professionals say.

Standardized Ambulatory Surgical Protocol Reduces Unplanned Postoperative Returns
Medical Xpress (10/24/17)

Standardizing clinical processes for open inguinal hernia repair reduced patients' postoperative pain and unplanned returns to the emergency room after surgery, according to the results of a study presented at the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress 2017. The authors, a group from Kaiser Permanente Southern California, reported on the region-wide implementation of an eight-step ambulatory surgery care protocol that spanned preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative phases of care.

Infection Prevention and Control in Pediatric Ambulatory Settings
Pediatrics (10/23/17) Rathore, Mobeen H.; Jackson, Mary Anne

Since the American Academy of Pediatrics published its statement titled "Infection Prevention and Control in Pediatric Ambulatory Settings" in 2007, there have been significant changes that prompted this updated statement. Infection prevention and control is an integral part of pediatric practice in ambulatory medical settings as well as in hospitals.

Robotic-Assisted Surgery: More Expensive, But Not Always More Effective
Reuters (10/24/17) Boggs, Will

Robotic-assisted surgery is much more expensive than other minimally invasive surgeries, but it does not improve outcomes of surgery for kidney tumors and rectal cancers. "The rapid increase in costly robot surgery in lieu of laparoscopic surgery without a definite advantage for the patient is a problem that can be applied not only to the urological field but also to the entire surgical field," Dr. In Gab Jeong from University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea told Reuters Health by email.

Trump Orders Public Health Emergency for Opioids, a Partial Measure to Fight Drug Epidemic
USA Today (10/26/17) Korte, Gregory

President Trump ordered his health secretary to declare the opioid crisis a public health emergency Thursday--but stopped short of declaring a more sweeping state of national emergency. In an address from the White House, Trump tried to rally the nation to pay attention to a growing epidemic that claimed 64,000 American lives last year, and advocated for a sustained national effort to end to the addiction crisis.

New Study Investigates Extent of Opioid Dependence and Overdose in Postoperative Patients (10/27/2017)

Drug overdose was the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S. in 2015. Although pain management after surgery continues to rely on opioids, there are concerns that ubiquitous use of opioids has led to a growing epidemic of addiction, dependence, and overdose (ODO).

One Last Question Before the Operation: Just How Frail Are You?
New York Times (10/27/17) Span, Paula

Earlier this month, Dr. Thomas Robinson, a general surgeon at the Denver Veterans Affairs Medical Center, saw a patient in his mid 80s. The man had gallstones that caused infections, with abdominal pain severe enough to send him to an emergency room every couple of months.

Baptist Health Acquires Surgery Center in Boca Raton
Baptist Health (10/24/2017)

Baptist Health South Florida has acquired a majority interest in South Palm Ambulatory Surgery Center, located in Boca Raton. South Palm Ambulatory Surgery Center changed its name to Baptist Health Surgery Center on October 6, 2017.

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