Foreground from left: JoAnne McCollian, chief executive officer of Emmaus Surgical Center in Hackettstown, New Jersey, Representative Tom Malinowski (D-NJ) and Glen Wainen, MD, of Emmaus Surgical Center during the congressman’s visit to the center on June 3.
Photo credit: Kelly McCollian
ASCA Members Host Facility Tours
Lawmakers start their summer by visiting ASCs
BY MAIA KUNKEL | JUNE 2022
Earlier in June, two ASCA members invited their members of Congress to visit their surgery centers.
On June 1, Tallgrass Surgical Center in Topeka, Kansas, hosted a facility tour for its new member of Congress, Representative Jake LaTurner (R-KS). Led by facility staff and representatives of The University of Kansas Health System, the ASC team showcased its center to the new lawmaker. This was the first time the congressman toured an ASC. “We presented Congressman LaTurner with our patient survey results and shared that we consistently score above the national average,” says Michelle Atkinson, administrator. “As is the case with most ASCs, we have a very low infection rate and great patient outcomes.” LaTurner also learned about the provisions of the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act of 2021, the importance of having an ASC representative on the Advisory Panel on Hospital Outpatient Payment and eliminating the copay penalty for certain Medicare Part B services. “Having the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act [passed] would begin to create a level playing field for ASCs by having a seat at the table as well as increasing reimbursement for the safe, efficient, outstanding patient care that occurs at ASCs all over the country every day,” Atkinson says.
On June 3, Emmaus Surgical Center in Hackettstown, New Jersey, hosted a facility tour for Representative Tom Malinowski (D-NJ). During the tour, Malinowski saw the OR equipment that facility staff marked with price tags to help him understand the daily costs of running an ASC. They informed the congressman about an ASC’s function and the value that surgery centers add to the healthcare system through improved patient outcomes and lower-cost care. The staff also discussed the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, staffing shortage and drug and supply shortages. “It was an honor for us to host a tour for the congressman and to be able to one-on-one let him know about us, our value and what we can do to reduce healthcare costs and improve patient outcomes and patient satisfaction in the ASC setting,” says JoAnne McCollian, chief executive officer. “Awareness of ASCs and their place in healthcare is very important, as well as the benefit that we provide to decrease cost for taxpayers, the Medicare system and private payers while improving overall patient outcomes and satisfaction.”
Facility tours, whether in person or virtual, provide an opportunity to directly connect with and educate elected officials about ASCs and their impact on their respective communities. ASCA has developed its facility tour program to ensure that conducting a tour is an easy and intuitive process for its members. ASCA members interested in hosting a facility tour for their members of Congress can complete the Facility Tour Interest Form or visit ASCA’s facility tour webpage for more information.
Write Maia Kunkel with questions.