Message from the President

Improve Patient Engagement, Improve Outcomes

Patient engagement is key to a successful surgical experience. It is more than completing surveys. It begins with the first call a surgery center makes to schedule a patient for surgery and continues through the postop call.

Read More >


Message from the CEO

Use ASCA Resources to Hire and Retain Your Best Employees

Thanks to a perfect storm that has been brewing in the US healthcare system for years, care providers in the US are experiencing a nursing shortage that is projected to intensify through 2030.

Read More >


As I See It

Care Delivery Continues to Shift from Acute to Ambulatory Settings

What ASCs can do to maintain financial stability

The aftermath of the pandemic has left the entire healthcare industry grappling with a blend of fresh hurdles in addition to longstanding issues. Widespread patient health concerns, strained clinician experiences and soaring health expenditures paint a challenging picture.

Read More >


Choose to Get Your ASC Accredited

ASCA’s virtual course can help in selecting the right accreditation organization

Accreditation plays a vital role in validating the ASC community’s solid reputation of providing high-quality, safe care to the communities served. The standards, guidelines and best practices encompassed in the accreditation manuals guide ASC leaders through the myriad of healthcare regulations.

Read More >


Doing Business

Rules of Engagement

Connection results in growth

As a member-supported organization, the Texas Ambulatory Surgery Center Society (TASCS) knows the importance of engaging with those who make our efforts possible. As we interact with potential and existing members, we build awareness and community, and establish trust and thought leadership.

Read More >


Emergency Preparedness

Shootings in Healthcare Facilities Rise

Steps to take to keep your surgery center safe

The topic of emergency preparedness comes up regularly in workplaces, but recently, this preparation has had to be enhanced. Specifically, healthcare facilities now have to think about what to do in the case of an active shooter.

Read More >



ASCA Members Celebrate National ASC Month

Surgery centers host facility tours for congressional staff, advocate for their cause

In August, ASCs across the country celebrate National ASC Month to highlight the high-quality, cost-effective surgical care that surgery centers provide to their patients and communities. 90210 Surgery Medical Center in Beverly Hills, California, and South Kansas City Surgicenter in Overland Park, Kansas, hosted their members of Congress to educate them about ASCs and the work they do for their community.

Read More >



Sg2 2023 Annual Report Forecasts Significant Growth in ASC Volume

GI, ophthalmology and orthopedic procedures will see the highest increases

ASCs will see 12 percent and 22 percent growth in the next 5 and 10 years, respectively, according to Sg2’s 2023 Impact of Change Forecast Highlights.

Read More >



Master Life Safety Code Compliance

Sign up for ASCA’s virtual course this October to learn how

ASCA’s third virtual course this year, Life Safety Code for ASCs, will be broadcast live over two half days, October 23 and 24. Recordings of the sessions will be available on demand later.

Read More >



Bryant Receives Nap Gary Award for Lifetime Achievement

The former chief executive officer of ASCA led the organization from 1998–2010

ASCA awarded its 2023 Nap Gary Legacy Award for Lifetime Achievement in the ASC Community to Kathy Bryant, former chief executive officer of ASCA.

Read More >


Continue Reading Below


Doing Right by the Community

An Illinois ASC helps patients in need access care

The Orthopaedic Institute Surgery Center in Metropolis, Illinois, helps its community by never sending a child who needs surgery back home without that surgery if the ASC can safely provide it. This is irrespective of the child’s insurance status. Melanie Russell, RN, the administrator of the ASC, is a pivotal part of this effort.

Read More >



Decoding the Anatomy of Pain Management Injections

Epidurals, biologics and emerging technologies

Understanding patient anatomy is a crucial part of the coding process, especially for intricate procedures like pain management injections. Getting those codes right the first time requires comprehensive knowledge of each injection type, technique and administration site.

Read More >


How to Use CMS’ Single-Use Endoscopes Billing Code

Follow these tips

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently assigned a new Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) code for use in facility billing for single-use endoscopes. This device code offers ASCs additional Medicare payments when using disposable ureteroscopes.

Read More >



Eliminate Common ASC Coding and Billing Compliance Issues

Follow these steps

Noncompliant coding and billing can lead to increased denials, missed reimbursement opportunities and unnecessary refunds. Additionally, poor compliance outcomes harm surgeon and patient satisfaction and could lead to more serious consequences, including loss of payer contracts and legal ramifications.

Read More >



ASCA Submits Codes for Addition to ASC-CPL

The organization used a new submission process that Medicare recently introduced

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently rolled out the ASC Covered Procedures List (ASC-CPL) Pre-Proposed Rule Recommendation Request, a new way to submit codes for consideration.

Read More >


Legal Matters

Informed Consent Process in Ambulatory Surgery

Review state laws and AHRQ materials before creating your policy

In rare situations, the duration of the informed consent could present an issue. Some state laws presume that a written authorization signed by the patient is valid. Some states might specify the time frame in which consent remains valid; others require that consent be obtained no more than 30 days from the procedure. Therefore, checking state regulations is essential.

Read More >



Build a Data-Driven Marketing Program

Foster relationships by eliminating the guesswork

Relying on word-of-mouth to cultivate awareness is not enough to establish and build reputation among potential patients in today’s competitive healthcare marketplace. Patients are using various means to shop for and select their care providers, and it is helpful to have a marketing program that connects with people as they consider options.

Read More >



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.

Read More >



Reintroducing the ASC Act in Congress

If passed, the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act will better align Medicare’s ASC and HOPD payment systems

As this issue of ASC Focus goes to press, Congressman John Larson (D-CT) and Congressman Brad Wenstrup, DPM (R-OH), are planning to introduce the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act of 2023 in the House side of the 118th Congress, and Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Senator William Cassidy, MD (R-LA), are planning to introduce the legislation in the Senate.

Read More >


Quality Improvement

Stay on the Forefront of Efficiency and Quality

Consider these new strategies

During the last 27 years, as an ophthalmic surgeon, I also was part owner of an ASC in Washington, DC. While I was able to transition successfully, I wish I had had many of the tools and features available today that would have made my life easier and my business more profitable.

Read More >


Continue Reading Below


The Future of ASCs

Advancing health equity through technology

“Health equity” is the state in which everyone has a fair and just opportunity to attain their highest level of health. Throughout my years as a surgeon and a national manager of surgery centers, I witnessed a transformation in the American healthcare landscape. Driven by the ASC industry, this transformation led and inspired improvements in efficiency and enhanced healthcare quality.

Read More >


Infection Prevention

Build an Effective Infection Prevention Program

Rely on sound policies, careful training and accountability

ASC employees often wear multiple hats and fill multiple roles that are normally individualized at larger facilities. In some cases, surgery centers have tight reprocessing areas or limited equipment, tools or chemistries to reprocess devices. Having access to the most updated instructions for use (IFU) is critical for success in this field and these situations.

Read More >



Preparing for and Responding to a Data Breach

Have a written plan, implement it in a timely manner and communicate with your patients

ASCs are attractive targets for cybercriminals. Surgery centers collect and store vast amounts of sensitive personal information. This is highly valued as it can be used for identity theft, blackmail and extortion.

Read More >



Exploring Denial Reasons

A revenue cycle analysis

With a focus on improving surgery centers’ revenue cycle management operations and rate of collections, our business intelligence and analysis team recently conducted a study using a subset of data to investigate common denial reasons for ASCs.

Read More >



Is Your Billing Team Performing Optimally?

Take a deep dive into your processes to decide

Your ASC is well-positioned in the community. It has a good reputation, as do your providers. Your caseload is steady or perhaps growing. You have a happy, busy staff.

Read More >


Regulatory Review

Six Months Left to Implement Patient Experience Survey

Start on the OAS CAHPS Survey now

The Outpatient and Ambulatory Surgery Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (OAS CAHPS) Survey, a patient experience survey, will become a mandatory component of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) ASC Quality Reporting (ASCQR) Program on January 1, 2025.

Read More >


Advocacy Spotlight

Advocating for ASC Growth

One-on-one with an orthopedic surgeon and ASCA Board member

David Weinstein, MD, ASCA Board member and orthopedic surgeon at Surgical Center of the Rockies in Colorado Springs, Colorado, attended National Advocacy Day in the beginning of this year. ASC Focus magazine talked to him about his experience and the importance of ASC advocacy.

Read More >


Member Profile

Fawn Esser Lipp, CASC

Fawn Esser Lipp, CASC, executive director of The Surgery Center LLC in Franklin, Wisconsin, discusses the factors affecting the efficacy of disinfection and sterilization in an ASC.

Read More >


Industry Insight

William A. Miller

William A. Miller, partner at Higgs, Fletcher, & Mack LLP in San Diego, California, discusses the most important legal issues for ASCs this year.

Read More >



Attend ASCA’s July Webinar

On July 16, John Goehle, CASC, chief operating officer of Ambulatory Healthcare Strategies, will lead the webinar “Use Financial Benchmarking to Support Your ASC’s Financial and Operational Health.”

Read More >


Web Crawl

Q2 Benchmarking Data Submission Opens in July

Data submission for the second quarter (Q2) of ASCA’s 2024 Clinical & Operational Benchmarking Survey will be open July 1–31.

Read More >