30 things for ASC leaders to know for July

Here are 30 things for healthcare leaders to note from the past month:

CMS proposes 1.9% increase in 2018 ASC pay, adding total joint replacements
CMS released a proposed rule that would update the Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System and the Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment System. CMS is proposing to increase payment rates by 1.9 percent to ASCs that are meeting quality reporting requirements. CMS based the increase on the consumer price index but adjusted it in accordance with the ACA.

The Surgery Center at Orthopedic Associates introduces total joint replacements
Poughkeepsie, N.Y.-based Orthopedic Associates of Dutchess County and The Surgery Center at Orthopedic Associates introduced outpatient total joint replacements at the ASC. The ASC is constructing an overnight recovery suite patients can utilize if necessary.

Compass Surgical Partners opens freestanding Florida ASC
Alongside local physicians and Davenport-based Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center, Compass Surgical Partners opened Heart of Florida Surgery Center. Heart of Florida Surgery Center is 13,000 square feet.

New York firm buys ASC operator
New York private equity firm Cortec Group's Eyeconic Vision Partners, its portfolio company, purchased Phoenix-based Swagel-Wootton Hiatt Eye Center. EVP operates six ASCs and 13 clinics.

Medical Facilities Corp. names Robert Horrar COO
Medical Facilities Corp. appointed Robert Horrar COO. Mr. Horrar comes to MFC after serving in various executive roles at Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Heath Systems.

Iowa ophthalmologist receives CON for ASC on 5th try
Lee Birchansky, MD, a Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based ophthalmologist received state approval to open an outpatient eye center on his fifth attempt in more than 10 years.

SurgiSite North creates new surgery center
Boston-based SurgiSite North partnered with Bowdoin Construction Corp., for its new 8,000-square-foot surgery center in Chelmford, Mass.

New York firm buys ASC operator
New York private equity firm Cortec Group's portfolio company Eyeconic Vision Partners purchased Phoenix-based Swagel-Wootton Hiatt Eye Center.

ASA appoints Dr. Lauren Berkow to committees
The American Society of Anesthesiologists appointed Gainesville-based UF Health anesthesiologist Lauren Berkow, MD, to its committee on neuroanesthesia and equipment and facilities.

Florida's 1st freestanding ASC is closing
Hollywood, Fla.-based Memorial Same Day Surgery Center is closing its doors next month. Competition in the area is increasing, leading the ASC to close its doors. Memorial Same Day Surgery Center is the first freestanding ASC in Florida.

Iowa hospital opening ASC to attract patients
Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based Mercy Medical Center is opening an ASC in Hiawatha, Iowa. The ASC will feature 11 preoperative and postoperative rooms.

Iowa physician suing state over CON law to appear before state council for 5th time
Ophthalmologist Lee Birchansky, MD, will appear before Iowa's State Health Facilities Council regarding his proposal for an ASC in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. This is the fifth time Dr. Birchansky is appearing before the council for his certificate-of-need application. Dr. Birchansky, his patient Michael Jensen and Orange City, Iowa-based Korver Ear Nose and Throat are among those who filed a lawsuit against the Iowa Department of Public Health regarding the state's CON legislation.

UK hospital finds 27 missing contact lenses in cataract surgery patient
United Kingdom-based Solihull Hospital medical staff found 27 missing contact lenses in the eye of a patient seeking cataract surgery. It is unclear how long the contacts were clustered in the patient's eye. The patient told surgeons sometimes she could not find a contact when she tried to remove it.

412 individuals charged in $1.3B fraud crackdown
In the largest healthcare fraud enforcement action to date, the U.S. government filed fraud-related charges against 412 individuals including 115 physicians, nurses and licensed medical professionals.

NYU Langone ASC receives $5M donation
The Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Foundation provided New York City-based NYU Langone a $5 million gift for its new plastic surgery center.

Massachusetts ophthalmology ASC celebrates 20 years
Adams, Mass.-based Cataract and Laser Center commemorated 20 years. Ophthalmologists opened the ASC in 1997. It has served more than 27,000 patients over two decades.

Surgical Specialty Center of Baton Rouge deploys Xenex LightStrike germ robot
The Surgical Specialty Center of Baton Rouge (La.) recently installed the Xenex LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot. The portable system uses pulsed xenon ultraviolet light to destroy germs and bacteria in operating and patient rooms.

Hospital for Special Surgery plans fall opening for outpatient center
New York City-based Hospital for Special Surgery aims to complete its 50,000-square-foot outpatient center this fall. The center will be HSS' largest outpatient center.

Atlanta Orthopaedic Institute collaborates with Practice Partners in Healthcare on ASC
Atlanta Orthopaedic Institute Surgery Center partnered with Practice Partners in Healthcare, a surgical services provider, to develop and manage an ASC. Raj Pandya, MD, AOI's founder, will help Practice Partners develop and manage the ASC.

New York hospital planning ambulatory facility
New York City-based Wyckoff Heights Medical Center wants to build an ambulatory facility in the space of a former automotive garage. The medical center wants to create a two-story ambulatory diagnostic and treatment facility in New York City, with a parking garage on the lower story.

Outdated colonoscopies performed at Oregon VA hospital prompt country-wide changes
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs inspector general is initiating system-wide changes after determining the Roseburg (Ore.) Veterans Affairs Medical Center performed colonoscopies using outdated methods. While the inspector general's report noted the center's colonoscopies had no documented adverse events, the former chief of surgery at Roseburg VA was using outdated practices like burning polyps.

Philanthropist donates $10M for surgery center at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford
Bonnie Uytengsu donated $10 million to Palo Alto, Calif.-based Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford to further the development of the health system's surgery center.

Marshfield Clinic to appeal CON denial for hospital with surgery center
Marshfield (Wis.) Clinic will appeal the Oneida County planning and development committees' decision to deny the clinic' certificate-of-need application for a hospital with a surgery center. The committee denied the application in a 3-to-2 vote June 14. The health system will submit its appeal by deadline.

Azura Vascular Care opens first Ohio center
Malvern, Pa.-based Azura Vascular Care celebrated the opening of its first Ohio center, Azura Vascular Care Cincinnati, on July 6. Steven Reed, MD, was named the center's medical director.

Oklahoma ASCs face updated building standards to meet Medicaid, Medicare safety codes
The Oklahoma State Department of Health implemented new standards for building requirements applicable to ASCs and hospitals. The health department set the standards to meet current national Medicaid and Medicare safety code guidelines.

Compass Surgical Partners adds Scott White as Florida market president
Scott White is the Florida market president of Compass Surgical Partners, an ASC management and development company. In his new role, Mr. White will oversee Compass' Florida surgery centers' operations and will lead the opening of various centers Compass has under development.

The Joint Commission releases 4 new TJR performance measures
The Joint Commission recently released four new performance measures for total hip and total knee replacement procedures. The measures correlate to the following areas:

  • Regional anesthesia
  • Postoperative ambulation on the day of surgery
  • Discharged to home
  • Preoperative functional/health status assessment

Premier Surgery Center of Sarasota sells for $4.4M
Premier Surgery Center of Sarasota (Fla.) sold for $4.43 million. National Surgery Center Holdings, a Tenet Healthcare subsidiary, is the majority tenant partner in the ASC.

Envision Healthcare purchases Connecticut anesthesia physician group practice
Envision Healthcare's physician services division acquired Greenwood Village, Conn.-based Anesthesia Associates, an anesthesia physician group practice.

Takeda CEO facing pressure amid dismal profits
Takeda Pharmaceuticals President and CEO Christophe Weber could face increased scrutiny after the retirement of Chairman Yasuchika Hasegawa. Mr. Hasegawa was supposed to assume a corporate councilor position following his retirement, but the company's stakeholders rejected the appointment after Takeda posted "dismal" earnings.

More articles on improving performance:
Top 10 ASC articles: July 24-28
4 things to know about the market for physicians, healthcare practitioners
Carolina Coast Surgery Center holds medical mentorship program: 4 points

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