From: Scott Becker <>
Subject: [Becker's ASC E-Weekly] 15 Things You Should Know About ASCs | 3 Strategies for Keeping Orthopedic Device Costs Down | 10 Interesting Statistics About Ophthalmology and Cataract Surgery in ASCs | Receive a Free Subscription to Becker's Orthopedic & Spine Practice Review |
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October 21, 2008
Latest News & Analysis

Note: In the Oct. 17 edition of the Becker's ASC Review e-weekly, a story discussing Revenue Per Case for 12 Specialties in ASCs temporarily listed incorrect data for orthopedics. The correct average gross charges for the specialty is $6,222; average net revenue is $2,192.

1. 10 Interesting Statistics About Ophthalmology and Cataract Surgery in ASCs. Click Here button

2. Kathy Bryant's Year in Review. Click Here button To join the ASC Association, call (703) 836-8808.

3. Richard Francis,  Jr., CEO of Symbion, is a top ASC management company CEO. See the complete list of CEOs in the March/April issue of Becker's ASC Review. To nominate a top CEO, e-mail Scott Becker at Read the bio of Richard Francis, Jr. Click Here button

4. 18 Companies That ASCS and Hospital Should Know More About. Click Here button

Look for the list of ASC management and development companies to watch in 2009 in the Jan./Feb. issue of Becker's ASC Review.

5. 3 Strategies for Keeping Orthopedic Device Costs Down. Click Here button

6. 11 Leaks to Plug in Your Billing Department to Ensure Total Reimbursement, by Hunter Howard of MediGain. Click Here button

7. To receive a free one-year subscription to Becker's Orthopedic & Spine Practice Review, a new quarterly magazine launching in January that will provide practical and critical business and legal guidance for orthopedic and spine practices, send your full contact information (name, title, facility/company, address, phone number and e-mail address) to Rob Kurtz ( View a sample issue. Click Here button

8. Ambulatory Surgical Center of Stevens Point (Stevens Point, Wis.): A Great Place to Work. Click Here button

9. Orthopedic & Sports Surgery Center (Appleton, Wis.): A Great Place to Work. Click Here button

Look for the list of great ASCs to work at in the Jan./Feb. issue of Becker's ASC Review. To nominate an ASC as a great place to work, e-mail Scott Becker at
2 Ways EMR Directly Impacts Quality of Care in ASCs

To illustrate just how directly an EMR designed for the ASC environment fosters quality and permits ease of reporting, here is a small sample of relevant EMR features for two of the five measures recommended by the ASC Quality Collaboration.

Patient burn -- To capture the number of admissions (patients) who experience a burn before discharge.

Calculation and presentation onscreen of normal thermia measures.
Electronic documentation of alcohol-based preoperative procedures creates structured data that can be searched and combined easily.
Electronic documentation of steps taken to prevent burns creates structured data.

Patient falls in the ASC -- To capture the number of admissions (patients) who experience a fall within the ASC.

Risk-to-fall indicators calculate a risk score based on patient information and display the score prominently.

These measures are excerpted from a story by Don Fallati, senior vice president of marketing, and Tom Pinelli, vice president of product management for Amkai. Read the full story. Learn more about Amkai.
Great ASC Turnaround to Know: Melville Surgery Center, Long Island, N.Y.

Melville Surgery Center, a Long Island, N.Y., multi-specialty ASC was on the brink of bankruptcy and destitute. It had not made money or any profit distributions in five years when ASCOA purchased it for $1.2 million and set to turn it around. By employing benchmarking and best practices in staffing, supplies, recruiting, case costing and accounts receivables -- as well as other strategies to remedy a high rent and lagging accounts payable -- within seven months, ASCOA was able to turn the ASC around to an average profit of $230,000.

Some other accomplishments: Staffing costs went from 52 percent to 20 percent of revenue; supply costs went from 29 percent to 14 percent of revenue; rent went from 14 percent to 5 percent of revenue; A/R went 94 to 29 days outstanding; A/P went from three to less than one month outstanding; and average revenue per case increased threefold, from $846 to $2586.

Melville is just one of the great ASCs to know profiled in the Nov./Dec. issue of The Becker's ASC Review. The issue covers practical turnaround guidance, and focuses on issues in GI, ENT and healthcare information technology. Don't miss it -- subscribe today.
15 Things You Should Know About ASCs, written by Scott Becker

1. CMS's new surgery center payment rates are viable.
Last year, we wrote that the new Medicare rate for surgery centers would generally be negative. After further study, and a better understanding of the political and economical impact, we tend to disagree with this earlier conclusion. The new rates from CMS are generally positive for higher-acuity procedures and negative for lower-acuity procedures. There are several winners and several losers under the new rates. Overall, the less a center is heavily focused on lower-acuity procedures like gastroenterology, pain management or ophthalmology, the more the overall impact of the changes is likely to be positive or minor.

Further, the changes should provide greater stability for several years to surgery centers. Finally, the changes' hardwired- in concept of surgery centers being reimbursed at 65 percent of hospital outpatient departments provides a tremendous political card to be used constantly for surgery centers in Washington, D.C., and other places. In essence, each time a procedure is done in the surgery center, there is almost no question that the federal Medicare program is saving money.

2. Surgery center turnarounds have become more common than start-ups.
Over the last few years, as more surgery centers have been built and fewer independent physicians are available, there has been greater growth and attention paid to turn around surgery centers than to building new surgery centers. This is a trend that is likely to continue. Turnaround ventures typically see one party buying out a developer or surgeons in a surgery center with the intent of re-syndicating and trying to develop a new and more successful surgery center at the same place.

To see the rest of this story, click here.
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Featured E-Weekly Advertisers

Amkai. Amkai is a software company with 20-plus years of experience delivering administrative and clinical solutions to ASCs, surgical hospitals and physician practices. The company is a silver sponsor of the Oct. ASC conference. Read more about Amkai.

Source Medical. SourceMedical is the leading provider of outpatient information solutions and services, collectively serving ASCs and surgical hospitals. Learn more about SourceMedical.

Ambulatory Surgical Group. ASG manages an extensive network of industry professionals to improve the operating and financial results of your ASC including banking, legal, accounting, architectural and construction, project financing, group purchasing, and equipment and supply vendors. Learn more about ASG.

Thank You to 10 Great Companies

National Medical Billing Services. NMBS specializes in freestanding outpatient surgery center coding and billing and providing ASCs with an outstanding opportunity to increase revenue through its cost-effective service, subject matter experts and integrity in business relationships. Learn more about NMBS. offers SCOR, a multi-purpose communication and case scheduling tool that leverages the Internet to improve ASC case scheduling efficiency, customer service and ability to market services. Read more about

Medical Facilities Corporation. Medical Facilities Corporation is a publicly traded company and a leading acquirer of majority interests in high quality specialty hospitals and ASCs. Read more about MFC.

Orion Medical Services. Orion Medical Services offers a turnkey approach to ASC development and management by covering all aspects of a project from financial feasibility analysis to site and operational development. Read more about Orion.

The C/N Group. The C/N Group is a recognized leader in the development, ownership and operation of exceptional healthcare facilities, including ASCs, medical office buildings and diagnostic imaging centers. Learn more about The C/N Group.

Mednet. Mednet has created a stand alone inventory management application called MIRA (Medical Inventory Reporting Application), which works with your existing management application or with the soon-to-be-released ASC management application OASIS. Read more about Mednet.

Spine Surgical Innovation. Spine Surgical Innovation designs and markets the Holmed Swivel Port System, which is designed for ease of use and intended for posterior or lateral lumbar surgery. Read more about Spine Surgical Innovation.

Nueterra Healthcare. Nueterra Healthcare partners with physicians and hospitals to develop and manage community hospitals, surgical hospitals, ASCs and physical therapy centers including new development, joint-ventures, acquisitions and turnarounds. Read more about Nueterra.

Marasco & Associates. Marasco & Associates is a national architecture and consulting firm, dedicated to providing quality facility design and development assistance for outpatient medical facilities, private physician groups, hospitals and institutional clients. Read more about Marasco.

Anesthesia Healthcare Partners. AHP provides ASCs, hospitals or office-based practice with all-inclusive anesthesia service solutions, including anesthesia billing, recruitment and practice management. Learn more about AHP.

Upcoming ASC Events
The 7th Annual Orthopedics-, Pain Management- and Spine-Driven ASC Conference
June 11 to 13, 2009

16th Improving Profitability, and Business, Strategic, Clinical and Legal Issues for ASCs
Oct. 8 to 10, 2009

For a complete list of upcoming events, click here
Quick Links
  • Click here to visit VMG Health for valuation needs.
  • Click here to visit HealthCare Appraisers.
  • Click here to visit Blue Chip Surgical Center Partners
  • Click here to visit Practice Partners in Healthcare.
  • Click here to visit National Surgical Care
  • Click here to visit Ambulatory Surgical Centers of America.
  • Click here to visit Serbin Surgery Center Billing
  • Click here to visit Meridian Surgical Partners.
  • Click here to visit Erdman (A Cogdell Spencer Company)
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