ASCA News Digest (September 12, 2017)

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September 12, 2017


ASCA Highlights

Industry News

ASCA Highlights

Register for ASCA’s New Infection Prevention Seminar

Learn how to implement and sustain a comprehensive infection prevention program at ASCA’s new winter seminar, Infection Control & Prevention Techniques for ASCs, January 11–13, in Las Vegas, Nevada. This intensive three-day program is designed specifically for infection preventionists working in ASCs and will provide a state-of-the-art investigation into best practices in sterilization, instrument reprocessing and more. Register.

ASCA also will offer two other seminars in January: Coding Update & Reimbursement Strategies and Minimizing Your Regulatory & Legal Risk. All three seminars run concurrently at the same venue, so you can attend sessions from the others at no additional cost. Learn more.
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Make sure your ASC is protected from cyber-attacks during ASCA’s next webinar, Cyber Security Issues for ASCs, scheduled for Tuesday, September 26, at 1:00 pm ET. Gerald Nussbaum, director of technology services at ECG Management Consultants, will discuss the threats cyber criminals pose to your ASC and share concrete, actionable steps you can take if a breach occurs. The webinar is $100 for ASCA members and $150 for nonmembers. Register.
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The next time your ASC needs to buy or sell health care supplies and equipment, look no further than the ASCA Asset Network. This secure online platform provides a streamlined, vetted marketplace featuring thousands of new and refurbished items. The ASCA Asset Network also offers a proprietary seller protection program, a dedicated buyer program to free ASC staff from time-intensive purchasing tasks and a mobile app. Get started.
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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. 
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Due to the devastating impact of Hurricane Harvey, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is granting exceptions for Medicare quality reporting requirements to ASCs located in areas affected by the storm. CMS has updated its list of affected localities to include 11 additional Texas counties and seven additional Louisiana parishes. ASCs located in the affected counties and parishes will receive exceptions to the reporting requirements without having to submit an extraordinary circumstances exception (ECE) request; ASCs located outside these areas may request an exception. Read more.
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ASCA staff members are scheduled to speak at several upcoming conferences:
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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 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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Since January, health care organizations across the country posted 145 breaches of protected health information (PHI) affecting 500 or more individuals. Most of the breaches (77 percent) were caused by unauthorized access and hacking. To review selected enforcement actions that highlight a few precautions ASCs can take, visit the ASC Focus website.
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Last week, ASCA submitted its formal comments in response to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) 2018 proposed payment rule, which, among other payment policies, proposes the reimbursement rates for the coming year. Read more.
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Industry News

Vermont's Laws Increase Health Care Costs, Say Analysts
VT Digger (09/07/17) Mansfield, Erin

Vermont has the most restrictive laws in the country governing whether new health care facilities can start up and whether existing facilities can buy new equipment, according to researchers at George Mason University in Virginia. The laws are so restrictive that Vermonters are spending more on health care than they would spend without the laws, lowering Vermonters' access to care, and lowering the quality of the care they do receive, the researchers say.

Health Care Expansion Regulations Pro or 'Con' for Mississippi?
Jackson Clarion-Ledger (Mississippi) (09/10/17) Wolfe, Anna

A national push to eliminate certain health care regulations has made its way to Mississippi, where free-market philosophy often influences policy decisions. Health care providers looking to expand some services are required to receive a "certificate of need" from the state Department of Health.

Surgical Center Proposal Re-Emerges for 2018 Session (09/05/17)

A Senate Republican on Tuesday proposed allowing patients to stay in ambulatory surgical centers for up to 24 hours, likely refueling a debate about regulation of the centers. The bill (SB 250), filed by Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, will be considered during the 2018 legislative session, which starts in January.

Three Congressmen Visit East Valley Endoscopy
AmSurg (09/06/17)

Congressmen Bobby Scott (D-VA), Brian Mast (R-FL) and Andy Biggs (R-AZ) toured local ASCs in their districts, including East Valley Endoscopy in Mesa, Arizona. During their visits, physicians and staff had the opportunity to discuss current ASC legislation and show the congressmen how ASCs provide high-quality care at a lower cost to the patient.

The CORE Institute, Banner Health Partner on First Outpatient ASC
Core Institute (09/05/17)

Non-profit Banner Health, the state's largest health system, and The CORE Institute, an integrated orthopedic and neurology practice with locations in Arizona and Michigan, have announced a new ownership agreement for the former Banner Del E. Webb Surgery Center in Glendale. Effective Aug. 31, Banner Health and The CORE Institute have become joint owners of the surgery center at 18301 N. 79th Ave., #E-150 in Glendale, renaming it the Banner CORE Union Hills Surgery Center.

Augmented Reality Technology May Help Guide Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
ScienceDaily (08/25/17)

A plastic surgery research group has developed an augmented reality system that enables them to create 3D simulations of the desired results of facial reconstructive procedures and project them over the patient's face during surgery, reports a study in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery -- Global Open. Koichi Ueda, MD, PhD, Daisuke Mitsuno, MD, and colleagues of Osaka Medical College, Japan, report the development and initial experience with an augmented reality (AR) system for evaluation of improvements of the body surface, a key consideration in plastic surgery.

Jacksonville Surgery Center and Orange Park Surgery Center Implement CT-Free Robotic-Assisted Orthopedic Surgery (09/03/17)

Jacksonville Surgery Center and Orange Park Surgery Center announced the addition of a NAVIO orthopedic surgical system to help surgeons perform precise and accurate partial knee replacement surgeries using the JOURNEY UNI knee from global medical device maker Smith & Nephew. This technology for partial knee replacements uses a CT-free intra-operative registration, planning and navigation platform to assist the surgeon in building patient-specific surgical plans.

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