Prevalence of freestanding ASCs on hospital campuses could affect interpretation of studies — 5 takeaways

The percentage of freestanding ASCs located within 250 yards of main hospital buildings is large enough to influence analyses of observational studies using ambulatory surgery datasets, researchers found

Here are five takeaways from a study published in the Journal of Clinical Anesthesia:

1. Researchers identified 124 hospitals with an affiliated ASC within 10 miles of the main campus.

2. Fifty-three of the 124 facilities were freestanding. Twenty-two — or 42 percent — were located within 250 yards.

3. Researchers using U.S. national data should not assume ambulatory surgery reported as performed at a hospital has been performed within the hospital.

4. They also should not assume hospital-affiliated freestanding surgery centers are more than a five-minute walk for anesthesia and operating room personnel from the hospital.

5. The findings apply to national ambulatory surgery datasets such as the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's State Ambulatory Surgery Database, which includes procedures performed at hospital outpatient surgery departments.

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