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Vermont senate proposes bill to license, regulate independent ASCs — 5 insights

Vermont could soon have a framework in place to establish and regulate independent ASCs, the VT Digger reports.

What you should know:

1. Vermont lags behind the nation in independent ASC development. Burlington-based Vermont Eye Surgery and Laser Center is the state's only independent ASC. The state's second independent ASC, Colchester, Vt.-based Green Mountain Surgery Center, is expected to open this year.

2. Legislative efforts to address independent ASCs have been in the works for years, failing each time. That could soon change. The Vermont Senate introduced a bill that would establish an independent ASC licensing and regulatory agency.

3. Based on recommendations from a working report, the senate bill would allow independent ASC development if the centers operate according to rules developed by the state's health department. The health department would have the power to deny, suspend or revoke licenses if the center fails to comply.

4. The bill would also require independent centers to have a physician serve as medical director and to have a registered nurse or advanced practice registered nurse oversee the center's nursing staff.

5. Green Mountain Surgery Center Manager Amy Cooper said about the legislation, "It's in line with what other states do."

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