30 things for ASC leaders to know for August 2017

This month comprised a slew of healthcare news, including major acquisitions and legislative updates.

Here's 30 things healthcare leaders should note for August:

CMS withdraws proposal that would have made accreditation reports public
CMS withdrew a proposal which would have required accrediting organizations to publicly disclose their accreditation surveys. CMS withdrew the rule after a flux of public comments.

New York health system taps anesthesiologist Dr. Laureen Hill for executive positions
New York City-based NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center named anesthesiologist Laureen Hill, MD, its senior vice president and COO.

Capitol Anesthesiology Association partners with Texas organization to create perioperative command center
Capitol Anesthesiology Association partnered with Seton Healthcare Family to open a community-based perioperative surgical home. All organizations are based in Austin, Texas.

Northwell Health names Dr. Peter McCann orthopedic director of ASC
Great Neck, N.Y.-based Northwell Health named Peter McCann, MD, director of orthopedic surgery at New York City-based Lenox Health Greenwich Village.

Gastro Health acquires Gastrointestinal Center of Hialeah
Miami-based Gastro Health acquired the Gastrointestinal Center of Hialeah (Fla.). The Joint Commission-accredited ASC features three operating rooms and specializes in outpatient gastrointestinal procedures.

KKR acquires Covenant Surgical Partners
Private equity firm KKR acquired Covenant Surgical Partners from previous owners and shareholders. Covenant owns 37 gastrointestinal and ophthalmic ASCs and practices in 17 states.

Massachusetts Insurance Department takes control of ACA co-op
The Massachusetts Insurance Department now controls Minuteman Health, a co-op based in Massachusetts. Bay State Insurance Commissioner Gary D. Anderson is the "receiver" for Minuteman, which means he controls the company. In June, Minuteman announced it would cease offering insurance in 2018 due to less capital and surplus.

MedStar Health opening orthopedic surgical facility with ASC
Columbia, Md.-based MedStar Health opened an orthopedic "super center" with an ASC in Timonium, Md. The 46,000-square-foot facility will offer orthopedics, spine, sports medicine, physiatry, pain management and rehabilitation services.

MedHQ names new human resources director
MedHQ, an HR, accounting and finance business services company specializing in the ASC market, hired Caitlin Scarpelli as director of human resources. Ms. Scarpelli will oversee MedHQ client organizations' administration of HR policies as well as procedures and programs.

Envision Healthcare strikes $2.4B deal on ambulance business
Envision Healthcare Corp. is selling its medical transportation subsidiary, American Medical Response, to portfolio company KKR. KKR will acquire AMR from Envision in a cash transaction totaling $2.4 billion and KKR will combine AMR with its Air Medical Group Holdings.

Digestive Medicine Associates opens fourth facility
Coral Gables, Fla.-based Digestive Medicine Associates is opening its fourth facility in Kendall, Fla.

Geneva Surgical Suites opens with SurgCenter partnership
The 7,086-square-foot Genoa City, Wis.-based Geneva Surgical Suites opened on July 24. Geneva Surgical Suites features two operating rooms and one minor procedure room.

78% of US public want Congress to make the ACA work
Most Americans view Congress' inability to pass healthcare reform bill as a positive, according to the August Kaiser Health Tracking Poll. Sixty percent said the Senate's failure to pass an ACA reform bill was a "good thing."

ASRA names Dr. Michael Stanton-Hicks its 2017 John Bonica Lecture Award winner
The American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine selected Michael Stanton-Hicks, MD, as its 2017 John J. Bonica Lecture Award winner. Dr. Stanton-Hicks is a former ASRA president and distinguished service award recipient.

Audubon Surgery Center now AAAHC-accredited
The Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care accredited Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Audubon Surgery Center. The center is a joint venture between Colorado Springs-based Penrose St. Francis Health Services and local physicians.

Surgery Partners to close National Surgical Healthcare deal in nearly 2 weeks
Surgery Partners set Aug. 31 as the date it will close on its deal to acquire National Surgical Healthcare. Surgery Partners bought National Surgical Healthcare for nearly $760 million.

More physicians on board with single-payer healthcare system
A Merritt Hawkins survey found 42 percent of physicians "strongly" favor a single-payer system and an additional 14 percent reported they "somewhat" support such a system. Only six percent are "somewhat" against the system

Montana hospital building $12.9M Digestive Health Institute
Kalispell (Mont.) Regional Healthcare is constructing a new gastroenterology center, the Digestive Health Institute. The institute is a $12.9 million, two-story, 28,216-square-foot building centered on gastroenterology care.

Buena Vista Regional Medical Center opens surgical center
Storm Lake, Iowa-based Buena Vista Regional Medical Center opened a surgical clinic Aug. 14 in Storm Lake. BVRMC named the clinic Buena Vista General Surgery.

US markets with the lowest ASC penetration
Some of the largest markets in the country have less than 40 percent ASC penetration, according to a Franklin Trust Ratings report titled "Disruption in the Surgical Care Marketplace. Cleveland has the lowest ASC penetration as 8 percent. See what other markets made the list here.

2 Tenet board members resign, citing 'irreconcilable differences'
Two Glenview Capital Management employees resigned from Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare's board of directors. Randy Simpson and Matt Ripperger jointly submitted a letter to the board, citing "irreconcilable differences."

NYU Langone planning $84M ASC
New York City-based NYU Langone is in the midst of planning an $84 million ASC to add to its Sunset Park campus. The center will provide orthopedic, ophthalmology, otolaryngology, vascular and plastic surgery.

New Jersey real estate firm to develop building with ASC
New Jersey real estate portfolio company Regent Medical Properties has its sights on a new project in Flushing, N.Y. Regent Medical Properties bought a 20,803-square-foot building in Flushing and plans to build a 12-story medical office building with an ASC.

Methodist Craig Ranch Surgery Center to open in Dallas
McKinney (Texas) Methodist Hospital announced plans to open the Methodist Craig Ranch Surgery Center in McKinney. The center will have seven operating rooms and will accept patients in November.

Florida jury finds gastroenterologist not liable in alleged 'slapdash colonoscopy' trial
A jury in a Florida state court cleared David Vastola, MD, on Aug. 16, of all responsibilities in a case a patient brought against him. Dr. Vastola was accused by a former patient of conducting a "slapdash colonoscopy." The patient developed colon cancer 18 months after Dr. Vastola performed a colonoscopy in 2011.

Knoxville Orthopaedic Clinic partners with Humana on Medicare outpatient joint replacements
Knoxville (Tenn.) Orthopaedic Clinic, a division of OrthoTennessee, partnered with Humana to provide Humana's Medicare Advantage beneficiaries access to outpatient hip and knee replacements at Knoxville Orthopaedic Surgery Center. Knoxville Orthopaedic Surgery Center is the only Tennessee-based ASC contracted with Humana to provide outpatient joint replacement for the payer's Medicare Advantage beneficiaries.

Health Plus Surgery Center, Dynamic Surgery Center COO dies suddenly at 60
Ralph Vellon, a leader within the healthcare industry, died suddenly at age 60. Mr. Vellon was the COO for Saddle Brook, N.J.-based Health Plus Surgery Center and Hackensack, N.J.-based Dynamic Surgery Center. Officials are determining the cause of death. They do not believe the death was suspicious, according to a director of S.W. Brown & Son Funeral Home in Nutley, N.J.

What 20 healthcare practices pay their anesthesiologists
 For anesthesiologists, Glassdoor says the national average salary is $294,811. Williamsville, N.Y.-based Maple-Gate Anesthesiologists tops the list, paying their anesthesiologists an average of $377,806. For more on anesthesiologist pay, click here.

Bethesda Chevy Chase Surgery Center seeks approval for $1.7M expansion
Bethesda (Md.) Chevy Chase Surgery Center has plans to expand to meet patient demand. The surgery center is seeking approval from Maryland officials regarding a $1.7 million expansion.

5 states with the lowest ASC hospital transfer and readmission rates
The top five states and regions with the lowest ASC hospital transfer/admission rates for 2015, ranked from lowest to highest include:
Washington, D.C. — 0
Rhode Island — 0
South Dakota — 0.069
Maine — 0.07
Hawaii — 0.11

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