ASCA News Digest (April 27, 2021)

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ASCA HIGHLIGHTS

The ASCA 2021 Virtual Conference kicked off yesterday and will continue live next Monday, May 3, and the following Monday, May 10. If you haven’t yet signed up, don’t worry—there’s still time to participate in this essential event for ASC professionals. Not only can you watch the next two days of the conference live, you can also watch the sessions you missed yesterday as on-demand recordings. Register today!
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In March, ASCA introduced a bimonthly survey series called 60-Second Survey designed to take the pulse of the ASC community and help ASCA provide the most up-to-date outreach and advocacy. Take the second survey about your facility’s experience with electronic health records (EHRs) today!
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First-quarter (Q1) data submission for ASCA’s 2021 Clinical & Operational Benchmarking Survey closes this Friday, 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. If you haven’t already, purchase your subscription today!
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ASCA is developing educational programs and content for next year—and we need your input. If you have suggestions for topics you want to see covered and/or speakers you would like to hear from in 2022, please let us know.

We are seeking topic and speaker suggestions for all of ASCA's programs, including:
  • ASCA 2022 Conference & Expo
  • 2022 Winter Seminar
  • 2022 Webinar Series
  • ASC Focus magazine articles
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On a call with ASC Quality Reporting (ASCQR) Program support staff last week, ASCA staff learned that 2,000 ASCs still have not registered to report their Medicare quality data and the registration process can take several weeks. Read this Digital Debut on how to start the process to ensure compliance by May 17 and avoid a 2 percent cut to your FFS Medicare reimbursements.
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On April 19, ASCA joined other healthcare associations in a letter of support for H.R. 2079, the Eliminating the Provider Relief Fund Tax Penalties Act. This legislation is sponsored by Representatives Cindy Axne (D-IA), Neil Dunn (R-FL) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and, if enacted, would ensure that all healthcare providers will not be subject to taxes on aid they received through the Provider Relief Fund.
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INDUSTRY NEWS

The Hill (04/22/21) Tal Axelrod
Almost one-third of health care workers considered leaving their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation poll released Thursday. Twenty-nine percent of health care workers said they "considered no longer working in health care," while 71 percent said they never thought about changing their careers.
The Hill (04/22/21) Tal Axelrod
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Kaiser Health News (04/20/21) Bruce Alpert
With medical visits picking up again among patients vaccinated against COVID-19, health providers are starting to see the consequences of a year of pandemic-delayed preventive and emergency care as they find more advanced cancer and rotting and damaged teeth, among other ailments. Dr. Brian Rah, chair of the cardiology department at Montana's Billings Clinic, was confused in the early days of the covid pandemic.
Kaiser Health News (04/20/21) Bruce Alpert
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FDA Consumer Updates (04/20/2021)
The evidence is clear - screening for colorectal cancer may save your life. Today, more and more people are choosing colorectal cancer screening.
FDA Consumer Updates (04/20/2021)
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Joint Commission Ambulatory Buzz blog (04/21/21) Helen Larios
In recent years, the field of spine surgery has made great progress in performing this type of surgery in the ambulatory setting. However, quality and safety issues continue related to limitations with: clinical practice guidelines, standardized care pathways, measurement of clinical outcomes, tracking complications of care, and variations in the identification and confirmation of the correct spinal level.
Joint Commission Ambulatory Buzz blog (04/21/21) Helen Larios
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Providence Journal (04/13/21) Katherine Gregg
With a tip of the hat to Senate Majority Whip Maryellen Goodwin, Rhode Island lawmakers on Tuesday cast final votes on a bill to prohibit insurers from charging co-pays for colorectal cancer screening, including colonoscopies. The House and then the Senate approved each others' bill by overwhelming margins and sent them over to the governor to be signed into law.
Providence Journal (04/13/21) Katherine Gregg
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Kaiser Family Foundation (04/19/21) Juliette Cubanski; Tricia Neuman
Policymakers are once again focusing attention on proposals to lower prescription drug costs. During the previous session of Congress, the House passed legislation (H.R. 3) to allow the federal government to negotiate drug prices for Medicare Part D, Medicare’s outpatient prescription drug benefit, and private insurers.
Kaiser Family Foundation (04/19/21) Juliette Cubanski; Tricia Neuman
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News summaries © copyright 2021 SmithBucklin

About ASCA

Mission: The Ambulatory Surgery Center Association (ASCA) is the national membership association that represents ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) and provides advocacy and resources to assist ASCs in delivering high-quality, cost-effective ambulatory surgery to all the patients they serve.

About Us: At ASCA, we are eager to help you become better acquainted with our nation's ASCs and the people who own and operate them. We are also eager to help you develop policies on ASC-related issues. If you have questions, please contact us. We'll put you in touch with the experts and, if you like, arrange for you to visit an ASC in your area.

Contact Us: Advertising inquiries should be addressed to Chris Schriever or Alex Yewdell at 202.337.1897 or at advertising@ascassociation.org.

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