3 rural ASCs to know

Here are three ambulatory surgery centers in rural areas.

If you would like to recommend another surgery center for this list, contact Anuja Vaidya at avaidya@beckershealthcare.com.

Northwoods Surgery Center (Woodruff, Wis.). The surgery center is located in a town with a population of 1,982. The ASC's patients come from five Wisconsin counties and several in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Patient engagement, physician commitment to the facility and the ability to recruit and maintain a professional team of staff members are important factors that determine the success of a rural ASC.

Opened in 2008, the Pinnacle III-affiliated center is a a joint venture between local surgeons and Aspirus Wausau Hospital. It is accredited by AAAHC and includes two operating rooms. It offers surgical services in ophthalmology, orthopedic, pain management and podiatry. It is a member of the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association.

Peak One Surgery Center (Frisco, Colo.). The ASC is located in a town with 6,906 people, but the center draws patients from across the country and around the world. It is located near a number of ski resorts that host thousands of patients in the winter and summer. The facility consistently draws patients from several counties in Colorado with an estimated total population of 104,536.

Rural ASCs face several challenges, one of which is talent shortage. Having a management and billing company can help rural ASCs overcome potential talent shortages in smaller communities.

The three-OR center was opened in 2005, and it is a joint venture between local surgeons and St. Anthony's Summit Medical Center. It is AAAHC-accredited and includes more than 22 physicians providing care in a wide array of specialties, including ENT, general surgery, gastroenterology, gynecology, ophthalmology, orthopedics and pain management. The surgery center is managed by Pinnacle III. It is a member of the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association and Colorado Ambulatory Surgery Center Association.

Hutchinson (Kan.) Ambulatory Surgery Center. Hutchinson's population is 42,000; however Hutchinson Clinic, of which the ASC is a part, serves patients from all over western Kansas. The center's patient population is approximately 250,000.

To ensure the success of a rural ASC, administrators need to be aware of the distace patients sometimes need to travel for treatment. Hutchinson ASC has negotiated discounts at nearby hotels for out-of-town patients. Another high priority for rural clinics is hiring physicians who can provide high quality care. Additionally, staff education regarding HIPAA regulations is emphasized because the community that the ASC serves is a close-knit one.

The 13,600-square-foot facility contains three operating room suites. It offers a number of surgical treatments such as endoscopic sinus surgery, hernia repairs, laparoscopic gallbladder removal, joint arthroscopies, carpal tunnel release and endometrial ablations.

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