ASCA News Digest (October 8, 2019)

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October 8, 2019

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ASCA Highlights



With your ASCA membership comes a variety of benefits that help you run your ASC more efficiently, provide quality patient care and stay up on industry trends and regulations. See all the ways in which this member puts her ASCA benefits to good use.

Renew via the online portal or return the renewal form you receive in the mail later this month.
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Echelon Medical Capital   Echelon Medical Capital offers innovative accounts receivable liquidity solutions for healthcare providers that take insurance or medical liens against pending personal injury cases. Echelon Medical Capital has quickly become one of the largest dedicated medical receivables funding companies in the country. With unrivaled levels of committed capital, Echelon can support medical practices of any size, including doctors, hospitals and surgery centers.

Sign up today to take advantage of early bird registration rates for the ASCA 2020 Winter Seminar, January 16–18 in New Orleans, LA. This year’s program features three specialized tracks: ASC Management, Coding & Reimbursement and—back this year by popular demand—Finance & Accounting.

Attendees can move freely between the tracks and join any of the sessions offered throughout the seminar. Check out the schedule and register today!
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Data collection for the third quarter (Q3) of ASCA’s 2019 Clinical & Operational Benchmarking Survey is open through October 31. Subscribers should make sure to submit their data by the deadline in order to get a complete picture of trends for the year.

Not yet subscribed to the 2019 survey? Purchase a subscription now.
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RG Medical

Purchase your copy of Finance & Accounting for ASCs, 4th Edition. This essential resource—published earlier this year—covers the fundamental concepts that every ASC manager needs to know and is illustrated with real-world examples from ASCs like yours.
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Every year, ASCA members participate in a fly-in to Washington, DC, as part of National Advocacy Day. The program helps ASCA members build relationships with the policymakers who make the decisions that directly impact the ASC community and its patients. Read this Digital Debut for more about this year’s successful National Advocacy Day event.
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Centurion Service Group

On September 27, ASCA formally responded to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) 2020 proposed payment rule for ASCs and hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs). Of note, ASCA supported CMS’s proposals to add eight codes to the ASC-payable list, including total knee arthroplasty (TKA), and to continue to align the ASC update factor with that used to update HOPD payments. Read more.
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Industry News


Providers Mostly Applaud CMS Over Fee Schedule, But Some Specialists Fear Cuts
Healthcare Dive (10/01/19) Liss, Samantha

Lobbying groups for the country's physicians and hospitals applauded CMS for its 2020 physician fee schedule rule largely due to the agency walking back a previous proposal that aimed to significantly alter how office visits, or evaluation and management (E/M) services, were coded and ultimately reimbursed. Still, the American Medical Association and American Hospital Association were more critical of CMS' proposal to better streamline multiple programs that tie Medicare reimbursement to quality or value. AHA said considerable revisions are needed to ensure that providers are assessed fairly and accurately in order to receive the appropriate payment.
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McKesson   Infection is the most common cause of total knee revisions, and the third most common in total hips. In fact, by 2030 the infection risk for hip and knee arthroplasty is expected to increase threefold.

If you’re doing total joints today, or planning to do them in the future, it’s important to have the tools and knowledge needed to prevent, diagnose and treat surgical site infections (SSIs).

What’s your plan to reduce SSIs? Click here for 4 tips to consider as part of your pre-op protocols.
New Executive Order Pledges Increased Support for Medicare Advantage
HealthPayerIntelligence (10/04/19)

On Thursday, President Trump issued the Executive Order on Protecting and Improving Medicare for Our Nation’s Seniors that will authorize the Department of Health & Human Services to expand Medicare Advantage and reduce fee-for-service. “Americans have to get the highest quality,” President Donald Trump said before signing the order.
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Cybersecurity: Ransomware Attacks Shut Down Clinics, Hospitals
AMA News Release (10/04/19) Robeznieks, Andis

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and it arrives not a moment too soon. Ransomware attacks across all industries grew by 118% in the first quarter of the year, according to the August 2019 McAfee Labs Threat Report, and recent news reports reveal that health care-related computer systems are becoming an increasingly popular target for cyber criminals.
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Regent RCM   Download Now

Do you have the tools and intel to gauge performance across all functions of your revenue cycle? As a leading provider of cost-effective billing and collection services for ASCs, Regent Revenue Cycle Management recently published ASC-specific benchmarks and our own gold standards. Download today and receive the paper and a case study highlighting how one center increased collections by $125,000 per month, due in part to A/R Follow Up.
Male Surgeons Are Paid More Than Female Surgeons, Even in Fields Like Gynecology
MarketWatch (10/02/19) Keshner, Andrew

Male and female surgeons are taking the same amount of time to perform common procedures — but woman are still earning 24 percent less per hour. That's according to a study of Canadian surgeons released Wednesday in another reminder of the far-reaching and persistent gender pay gap between men and women.
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Tobacco Smoking Endangers Orthopaedic Operations and Trauma Surgery
Orthopedics Today (10/19)

Technical innovations led to excellent results in orthopaedic surgery. Quality management efforts like registers, patient-reported outcome measure, and certifications, like EndoCert, brought us, in many cases, to even higher success rates.
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