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ASCA backs proposed law affecting ASC reimbursement, quality data

The Ambulatory Surgery Center Association is backing new legislation that would affect how CMS handles payment and quality data for ASCs and hospital outpatient departments.

The ASC Quality and Access Act of 2019 was introduced on Sept. 17 by U.S. Reps. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., and John Larson, D-Conn. ASCA pledged its support on Sept. 18.

Also known as HR 4350, the legislation would:

  • Require inflation updates to be the same for ASCs and HOPDs
  • Require CMS to publish quality data in a way that allows patients to compare sites of service
  • Require CMS to add an ASC representative to its Advisory Panel on Hospital Outpatient Payment
  • Require CMS to disclose reasons for the exclusion of a procedure from the ASC-payable list

ASCA CEO William Prentice said the legislation would decrease Medicare beneficiaries' out-of-pocket costs and stabilize the Medicare program.

"This bill addresses those priorities by making a permanent fix to Medicare's reimbursement structure that will increase our seniors' access to the high-value care provided in ASCs, while also increasing transparency so they and their families have the information they need to be informed decision-makers," he said.

More articles on surgery centers:
20 key findings from MedPAC's report on ASCs in 2019
Missouri ASC celebrates 20 years
How potential changes to Stark Law could help or hurt ASCs — 3 insights



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