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Value-Based Payment Rules May Be Bound for ASCs

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, April 20, 2011

The HHS report to Congress mentions that the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission in 2010 expressed its concern to Congress with "further postponing the implementation of ASC Medicare quality data reporting."

It said, "in recent years, ASCs have rapidly become a critical component of the U.S. healthcare system by improving access to care and providing surgical procedures.

MedPAC also said it would be "technically feasible without imposing an undue administrative burden to begin quality data reporting in 2010. In addition, MedPAC concluded that ASCs have the technical capacity to report on facility-level quality measures which the ASC Quality Collaborationsupports and have the endorsement of the National Quality Forum."

The HHS report to Congress lists the top 20 surgical procedures by volume at ASC in 2009. Nearly one-third, 32.1% dealt with the eye, such as laser surgery on the eye or cataract surgery, and nearly another third, 32.7% involved gastrointestinal procedures such as colonoscopies or upper GI endoscopies and biopsies. Nervous system procedures comprised 19%, musculoskeletal procedures 6.6% and genitourinary surgeries, 3.7%.

Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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