ASCs in 2020: What 7 execs will do more of, and what they'll leave behind

Heading into the fourth quarter of the year, business leaders across the nation are looking ahead to 2020 for the core strategy that will drive success.

ASCs are no different, with administrators and executives aiming to turn a new leaf and pursue expansion projects, set strict implant price limits and spread awareness of the benefits of ASCs. Seven ASC leaders answer this question: what do you expect to do more of in 2020 and what do you plan to leave behind?

Lisa Davis. Administrator for The Center for Minimally Invasive Surgery (Munster, Ind.): I plan to do more data analysis — the better an understanding you have of your costs, the more you are able to put systems in place to deliver value to the patient, employer and payer.

Christine Washick, RN, CASC. Administrator of Triangle Orthopaedics Surgery Center (Raleigh, N.C.): We aim to do more total joint and spine procedures. We plan to leave behind implant vendors who are not willing to play in the ASC market by providing high quality clinical devices at lower costs for patients where reimbursements are on average, 40 percent lower than the hospital.

Chariesse Fizer, RN, MSN, FACHE. Vice President of Clinical Operations and Ambulatory Services for AtlantiCare, a member of Geisinger Health (Atlantic City, N.J.): We plan to tailor care to the setting and not treating everything done surgically or procedurally with the same broad brush as inpatients.

Chris Flores. CEO of East Loop Surgery Center (Odessa, Texas) and Vista Surgery Centers (Midland, Texas): The ASC has such a large capital cost structure that until we approach 90 percent facility utilization we would not want to leave behind anything that does not cover marginal cost. As a rule, we do not seek plastic cases and pediatric dentistry.

We will look at anything. When asking about leaving cases behind, historically it is more a case of disruptive surgeons or disruptive financial situations related to a doctor. From a medical perspective if it is clinically appropriate and competently performed, we are interested.

Lynne Miller. CEO and Administrator of Texas Health Orthopedic Surgery Center Heritage (Fort Worth): We are a new de novo center that just opened in September 2018. We are a single specialty orthopedic facility that does sports medicine, foot and ankle, pain management, total joints, and spine cases.

For 2020, we are working to ramp up our utilization by opening our fourth operating room and procedure room. This will require outfitting an OR with an arthroscopy tower, table, bovie and tourniquet. We are also adding teammates in all areas to handle the volume increase.

We are working to master all our processes to continue to create the safest facility for patients and teammates.

I'm leaving behind the new construction, facility kinks and looking forward to focusing on what I know best, which is running an ASC.

JoAnn M. Vecchio. Administrator and CEO of ASC of WNY (Amherst, N.Y.): We hope to do more cases across the board with a focus on total joints and utilize some new ophthalmology technology in the way of scopes, IOLs and refractive procedures.

Brooke Day. Administrator of Hastings (Neb.) Surgery Center: Healthcare does not seem to be a key priority for the current administration, so I am hoping for most of 2020 we remain consistent in the business we are doing. We are always monitoring the cases that do not generate income for the center, but we also believe the convenience to our surgeons is just as important as the revenue we make. We have done minimal pain management the last couple years and do not have any plans to actively recruit a physician to perform these procedures.

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