The ASCA board of directors voted unanimously to approve the 2012 legislative and regulatory agenda for the association. The agenda builds on issues that the association was addressing in its advocacy program last year and adds several new concerns that target emerging problems that have been raised by association members. Items on the agenda include:
• Change the basis for the ASC update from CPI-U to the Hospital Market Basket;
• Work with other affected groups to design solutions to issues causing drug supply problems at ASCs;
• Decrease the high threshold for determining which procedures are device intensive procedures in the ASC setting;
• Work to open the Medicare procedures list;
• Provide a transition to the initial 2 percent reimbursement penalty that is set to be imposed in 2014 on ASCs that fail to report quality data beginning this year;
• Provide a transition to the public reporting of quality data;
• Work with affected physician specialties to address EHR meaningful use issues in the ASC setting;
• Modify the physician discharge condition for coverage;
• Modify or eliminate the condition for coverage requiring a radiologist to be on staff;
• Monitor regulatory and legislative developments pertaining to Accountable Care Organizations and state health insurance exchanges in order to maintain access to ASCs.
“The committee feels that the legislative and regulatory agenda that ASCA will be working on this year includes many of the fundamental reimbursement issues, as well as regulatory challenges, that ASCs across the country deal with on a daily basis," says ASCA board member and Government Affairs Committee Chair Dr. Keith Metz. "We look forward to working with ASCA members from across the country as we seek to improve patient access to the high-quality, cost-effective care provided within ASCs."