5 thoughts on keeping up with ASC quality reporting requirements

Quality reporting is now affecting how healthcare providers, including ambulatory surgery centers, are paid.

At the Becker's 13th Annual Spine, Orthopedic & Pain Management-Driven ASC Conference + The Future of Spine, Ann Geier, RN, MS, CNOR, CASC, CNO with SourceMedical, offered five thoughts for ASC leaders to keep up with quality reporting requirements.

1. Know your measures. ASCs have CMS measures to contend with for CY 2016.

•    ASC-1 Patient burn
•    ASC-2 Patient fall
•    ASC-3 Wrong site, wrong side, wrong patient, wrong procedure, wrong implant
•    ASC-4 Hospital transfer/admission
•    ASC-5 Prophylactic IV antibiotic timing
•    ASC-6 Safe surgery checklist use
•    ASC-7 ASC facility volume data on selected ASC surgical procedures
•    ASC-8 Influenza vaccination coverage among healthcare personnel

Additionally, measures ASC-9, ASC-10 and ASC-11 apply to centers that perform endoscopy procedures. ASC-9 refers to endoscopy/polyp surveillance: appropriate follow-up interval for normal colonoscopy in average risk patients. ASC-10 refers to endoscopy/polyp surveillance interval for patients with a history of adenomatous polyps. ASC-11, a voluntary measure, refers to cataracts: improvement in patient's visual function within 90 days following cataract surgery. Lastly, ASC-12 refers to facility seven-day risk-standardized hospital visit rate after colonoscopy, but ASCs do not need to report anything for this measure. This data is pulled from claims submitted by the hospital.

It is important to remember that these measures are subject to change. "Measures can be added and retired; don't expect this to be static," said Ms. Geier.

2. Know your resources. There are multiple resources available for ASC leaders working to remain compliant with reporting requirements. The Ambulatory Surgery Center Association and ASC Quality Collaboration are two excellent sources of support. Many other organizations offer tools such as sample safe surgery checklists. "Don't reinvent the wheel. There are excellent tools available," said Ms. Geier.

3. Register with the appropriate sources. ASC leaders need to register with both QualityNet and the National Healthcare Safety Network. Though the process can be tedious and time consuming, it is important to complete. Be sure to regularly log in to QualityNet; accounts left inactive for too long will expire.

4. Adopt a team approach. Quality reporting is a time consuming process, but it is not a responsibility that should fall on one person's shoulders. "This is not an administrator required function. Delegate. Use your staff," said Ms. Geier. "You also need to educate your physicians." Everyone at the center should have a stake in the quality reporting process.

5. Look ahead. Quality reporting will only grow; as time progresses new measures will be added, and penalties for non-compliance will likely grow. Possible new measures include:

•    Postoperative nausea and vomiting
•    Toxic anterior segment syndrome
•    All case hospital admission within two days of discharge
•    All case emergency department visits within two days of discharge

It will also become more important to focus on the patient perspective. "Start looking at patient satisfaction surveys as patient experience of care surveys," says Ms. Geier. "It will become a standardized reporting mechanism."

More articles on quality issues:
Surgical never events: 8 key points on incidence, root causes & potential interventions
CDC reports cases of Hepatitis C are rising: 4 facts
Oregon Ambulatory Surgery Center Association hosts infection control seminar

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