Departments

Departments

 

Message from the President

Health Care Consumerism: Are You Ready?

Whether you are working with a single independent consumer or a representative from a workplace sponsored plan, today’s consumers are seeking decreased cost, increased quality and an improved experience in their health care encounters. How well are you prepared to meet their demands?


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Message from the CEO

Combating the Opioid Crisis

As the country grapples with a tragic opioid epidemic, the government and ASCA are working to support a comprehensive solution to address the abuse and misuse of pain-killers. According to the US Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), opioid overdoses accounted for more than 42,000 deaths in 2016, more than any previous year on record.


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As I See It

Postsurgical Pain Management in ASCs

Prevent opioid dependency, minimize readmissions and improve patient experience

Major advances in surgical techniques have enabled ASCs to perform a myriad of outpatient surgery procedures on millions of Americans. Many challenges, however, still exist in adequately managing postsurgical pain while minimizing negative outcomes in the ASC setting.


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Q & A

ASCA CEO Discusses Proposed 2019 ASC Payment Rule

A Q&A with Bill Prentice

On July 25, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2019 proposed payment rule for ASCs and hospital outpatient departments (HOPD). ASCA Chief Executive Officer Bill Prentice talks about the policy changes proposed and the implications of those changes for ASCs.


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ASCA 2019

Help Patients Manage Pain Wisely

Come to ASCA 2019 to learn how

As a practicing anesthesiologist with 20-plus years of clinical experience in both the hospital and ASC practice environments, I have witnessed patient expectations changing dramatically. I have experienced the challenges associated with providing a relatively “pain free” patient care experience.


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Coding

Applying NFPA 99 to Your ASC

The Health Care Facilities Code identifies provisions for maintaining building systems

Health care facilities, including ASCs, contain many building systems and equipment that are unique compared to other occupancies. Those systems play a vital role in providing care to patients and are a key component in patient outcomes. Even those systems that are not unique to health care can have more importance in facilities that are occupied by the sick, weak or otherwise compromised (i.e., individuals who are sedated or under anesthesia). The continual upkeep of these systems and equipment is essential to providing safe patient care.


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Compliance

OSHA Updates Its Regulations

Learn how to implement the revised reporting requirements

In 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a proposed rule to improve the tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses through the electronic collection of establishment-specific injury and illness data. After receiving comments on the proposal, OSHA issued the final rule that became effective January 1, 2017 (Occupational Safety and Health Administration 29 CFR Part 1904).


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Regulations

OSHA Updates Its Regulations

Learn how to implement the revised reporting requirements

In 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a proposed rule to improve the tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses through the electronic collection of establishment-specific injury and illness data. After receiving comments on the proposal, OSHA issued the final rule that became effective January 1, 2017 (Occupational Safety and Health Administration 29 CFR Part 1904). For more information on the final rule, click here. Although ASCs are partially exempt from some of the requirements in that rule, they are subject to a requirement that prohibits employers from discouraging workers from reporting an injury or illness.


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Doing Business

Improve Patient Engagement with Two-Way Texting

Advantages of replacing voice mails with electronic messaging

Communicating with patients can be challenging. Traditional methods can be expensive and time consuming and are becoming less effective every day.


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Insurance

Trends in Medical Risk Transfer

Risks that are uninsurable or prohibitively expensive to insure might call for alternative risk transfer

In an ever-changing world, it is no secret that risks associated with ASCs also are evolving. Trends in medical risk transfer, however, are generally not related to ordinary risks but rather nontraditional—low frequency/high severity—risks. If these risks occur, they have the ability to bring a practice to a screeching halt. Examples of such risks include: loss or suspension of professional license, legislative and regulatory changes, cyber risk (breach of customer data and detrimental code) and related Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) violations.


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Legislature

ASCA Advocates for Fair Implementation of Section 603

Congress passes site-neutral payment legislation

On November 2, 2015, congressional leaders and the Obama administration announced a bipartisan budget agreement that would fund the federal government for two years, raise the nation’s debt ceiling and stave off Medicare premium increases for beneficiaries. The final legislation, called the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, responded to a number approaching fiscal deadlines and leadership changes in the House that could have impacted the ability to strike such a deal.


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Technology

Curbing the Opioid Epidemic

The role of ASCs and EHRs

Emergency rooms (ER)—where a 2016 New York Times report says up to 75 percent of visits are for pain—can be a starting point for addiction. Many patients’ initial exposure to opioids, however, is immediately following outpatient surgery.


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Finances

Take Your ASC Revenue Cycle to the Next Level

Your employees are the most important tool to success

We all know every penny counts, but the rapidly changing rules surrounding ASC reimbursement can make revenue cycle management difficult. We can be ready for whatever changes come our way if we have the right tools, anticipate and adapt. When we think “tools,” we generally think software, hardware and medical equipment, but the most important tool for an ASC’s success is something else that is sometimes forgotten. More on that later. Below are a few tips to manage your revenue cycle successfully.


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Regulatory Review

Driving Quality in ASC Total Joint Procedures

Certifications, data collection and AJRR reporting are key

As technology and new techniques expand the possibilities for outpatient surgery, few procedures have been the focus of as much discussion as total joint replacements (TJR). The rise of these procedures—in demand, performance and overall spending— has been nothing short of meteoric.


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Advocacy Spotlight

Opioid Crisis Response Continues

Congress and ASCA work to raise awareness and curb use

According to an estimate from the US Drug Enforcement Administration, more than 72,000 Americans died in 2017 from drug overdoses. Preliminary data show 49,060 of these deaths were related to opioids—an increase from 42,249 in 2016.


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ASCA News

Register Now to Save on ASCA 2019

Make plans now to attend the ASCA 2019 Conference & Expo, May 15–18, in Nashville, Tennessee. ASCA’s annual conference—traditionally the ASC industry’s largest gathering of the year—offers extensive opportunities for professional development, networking and earning continuing education credits.


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Web Crawl

Renew Your ASCA Membership by February 28

Renew your ASCA membership for 2019 and make sure you do not miss any member benefits. Being an ASCA member provides your staff access to vital educational resources, valuable networking opportunities, essential industry news and tools to use daily in your practice.


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