ASCA News Digest (April 23, 2019)

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April 23, 2019


ASCA Highlights

First-quarter (Q1) data collection for ASCA’s 2019 Clinical & Operational Benchmarking Survey closes next Tuesday, April 30. This valuable online resource provides access to a full year of national comparison data you can use to improve clinical outcomes, billing performance, staffing and more at your ASC. Purchase your subscription today!
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ASCA 2019 Focus Groups   ASCA 2019 attendees are invited to participate in one of six Affiliate-led Focus Group lunches. This is your opportunity to help ASCA Affiliates shape their product/service offerings during a targeted discussion over lunch.

+Finding the Future of Supply Chain Distribution for ASCs Hosted by Cardinal Health
+Managing Postoperative Pain in Ambulatory Surgery Center Settings Hosted by Heron Therapeutics
+Addressing the Opioid Crisis in ASCs: Social Risk Scoring, Prevention and Reportable Outcomes Measures Hosted by HSTpathways
+Do More of What You Love: How to Make More Time for Patient Care Hosted by McKesson Medical-Surgical
+Reporting to Simplify Your ASC Operations and Harness the Power of Your Data Hosted by Simplify ASC
+Strategies for Success as Orthopedics and Total Joints Shift to Outpatient Value-Based Care Hosted by Smith & Nephew

For consideration, please complete the Focus Group Registration Form by Friday, May 10. Participation is limited to ASCA 2019 attendees and advance registration is required.

Online registration for the ASCA 2019 Conference & Expo, May 15–18 in Nashville, TN, will close Friday, May 3—so register today! ASCA’s annual conference features 50+ ASC-specific educational sessions designed for professionals at all levels, unparalleled networking opportunities, hundreds of product demos in the largest ASC-specific exhibit hall of the year and more.

Need help convincing your supervisor to send you to ASCA 2019? Check out ASCA’s supervisor approval letter template, which you can customize to your own specific situation. Register today!
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Sign up for the 2019 ASCA State Leaders Conference, scheduled for Wednesday, May 15, from 12:00 pm–4:00 pm CT during the ASCA 2019 Conference & Expo in Nashville, TN. Participants will network with their peers in other states to learn best practices on association membership recruitment and marketing, advocacy and strategic planning, as well as how to effectively communicate with their peers on legislative issues affecting ASCs. Register today!
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Apply today to take the next Certified Ambulatory Infection Preventionist (CAIP)™ exam, offered during the month of June. CAIP is the first credential designed specifically for infection preventionists in the ASC industry. This certification distinguishes those with a comprehensive understanding of the skills and knowledge that the role of an ASC infection preventionist requires. The last day to apply is next Tuesday, April 30. Apply today!
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Simply saying that an opioid crisis or epidemic is related to our expectations for a pain-free encounter or experience would be misguided to say the least, however, unrealistic expectations of pain-free surgery do likely contribute to the opioid epidemic in the US today. Read this ASC Focus article on the current relationship and future possibilities between health care providers, patients and opioids.
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ImageFirst   ImageFIRST® is the largest and fastest growing national linen rental and laundry service specializing in the healthcare market. ImageFIRST’s 36 locations nationwide serve over 10,000 medical facilities every week providing linen, patient gowns, scrubs and more while managing their clients’ linen inventory for cost management. With a customer retention rate of over 95%, ImageFIRST is dedicated to improving patient satisfaction through quality products and remarkable service: their Comfort Care® line of gowns are proven to increase patients’ favorable perception of a facility by more than 50%. For more information about ImageFIRST, please visit

To comply with Medicare’s Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality Reporting (ASCQR) Program and avoid penalties for calendar year (CY) 2020, you must submit data on ASC-9, ASC-10, ASC-13 and ASC-14 through the QualityNet Secure Portal by May 15, 2019. For more information on these measures, please visit ASCA’s quality reporting resource center. Read more.
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Industry News

Top 10 Most Challenging Ambulatory Care and Office-Based Surgery Standards for 2018
Joint Commission Ambulatory Buzz blog (04/17/19) Webb, Joyce

It's April, it's spring and ... it's time for The Joint Commission to share the Top 10 Challenging Standards for accredited Ambulatory Health Care (AHC) organizations and Office-Based Surgery (OBS) practices for 2018. The Joint Commission regularly analyzes standards compliance data to help identify the most common challenges impacting AHC and OBS customers.
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Heron Therapeutics  

How the Surgical Setting Contributes to the Opioid Crisis

The number of Americans who become addicted to opioids following surgery is an under-reported implication of a crisis sweeping the nation. How did we get to a point where up to 440,000 people become addicted this way — every year? Continue reading here.

New Regs Proposed in VT House Committee Could Rankle Surgery Centers
VT Digger (04/19/19) Faher, Mike

The Legislature's ongoing effort to regulate independent surgical centers may again be headed for controversy. House Health Care Committee members on Friday discussed several proposals – including a provider tax and Green Mountain Care Board budget review – that have spurred protest from surgery center administrators in the past.
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NC House Members Take Another Stab at Certificate-of-Need Reform
Laurinburg Exchange (04/22/19) Way, Dan

A bipartisan group of House members hopes to break a regulatory chokehold on surgical facilities. Reps. Billy Richardson, D-Cumberland; Ed Goodwin, R-Chowan; and David Rogers, R-Rutherford, on Tuesday, April 16, filed House Bill 857.
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Modernizing Medicine
New Bangor Surgical Center Part of a Trend Offering Hospitals Stiff Competition
Bangor Daily News (ME) (04/17/19) Eichacker, Charles

A group of Bangor surgeons has opened a new outpatient surgery center near the Bangor Mall that allows them to more easily do advanced types of surgery, in particular same-day knee, hip and shoulder replacements. On Wednesday, Downeast Surgery Center officially opens its larger facility at 73 Ridgewood Ave. off Stillwater Avenue, which features three operating rooms, extra storage space and state-of-the-art technology.
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3D Goggles May Soon Help Surgeons See Better
Reuters Health (04/17/19) Carroll, Linda

In a first, heart surgeons in Poland used 3D goggles to help them see inside a patient's chest as they opened up a narrowed heart valve, according to a report in the European Heart Journal. Although the imaging machines surgeons typically use to peer into the body collect data in three dimensions, the images are displayed on two-dimensional screens.
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Center's Planned Expansion Into Plastic and Eye Surgery Meets Resistance
VT Digger (04/17/19) Faher, Mike

Even before opening the doors of Vermont's second independent surgical center, administrators are looking to expand. In a proposal before state regulators, Green Mountain Surgery Center in Colchester would add ophthalmology and plastic surgery to its mix of outpatient services when it opens later this year.
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Appalachian Regional Prescription Opioid (ARPO) Strike Force Takedown Results in Charges Against 60 Individuals, Including 53 Medical Professionals
U.S. Department of Justice (04/17/19)

Attorney General William P. Barr and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex M. Azar II, together with multiple law enforcement partners, today announced enforcement actions involving 60 charged defendants across 11 federal districts, including 31 doctors, seven pharmacists, eight nurse practitioners, and seven other licensed medical professionals, for their alleged participation in the illegal prescribing and distributing of opioids and other dangerous narcotics and for health care fraud schemes. In addition, HHS announced today that since June 2018, it has excluded over 2,000 individuals from participation in Medicare, Medicaid and all other Federal health care programs, which includes more than 650 providers excluded for conduct related to opioid diversion and abuse.
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D&Y Staffing
ASCA 2019