2012-02-22 20:22:04 UTC

Prepare for the New Quality Reporting Program

Feb. 23, 2012

Ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) that fail to successfully report ASC quality measures will face a 2 percent facility fee reimbursement reduction in 2014. However, you need to begin preparing now. ASCs are required to capture facility volume data and institute the use of a safe surgery checklist.

By Lawrence R. Kosinski, MD, MBA, AGAF, chair, AGA Institute Practice Management and Economics Committee

AGA, along with ACG and ASGE, sponsored a free webinar on the upcoming Medicare quality reporting program for ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs), which requires all of us who practice at ASCs to begin planning now. View the slides.

ASCs that fail to successfully report the ASC quality measures will face a 2 percent facility fee reimbursement reduction in 2014. However, you need to begin preparing now. ASCs are required to capture facility volume data and institute the use of a safe surgery checklist. Even though reporting on these activities will not be required until 2013, ASCs must capture facility volume data and document that they are using a safe surgery checklist for calendar year 2012.

During the webinar, Anita J. Bhatia, PhD, MPH, the CMS program lead for the ASC quality reporting program clarified that ASCs will be able to report “yes” on the use of a safe surgical checklist if it was adopted anytime during the period of Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2012, and if it covers three critical perioperative periods:

  • Prior to administering anesthesia.
  • Prior to skin incision.
  • Prior to patient leaving the operating room.

Beginning Oct. 1, 2012, ASCs will also be required to report five quality measures on Medicare claims forms.

How should the GI ASC prepare for this program?

  • Designate a quality point person through a quality committee, or designate a physician champion.
  • Be prepared for the facility volume data collection and safe surgery checklist measures.
  • Review measure specifications.
  • Develop a process for recording occurrences and track them at your quality meetings.
  • Begin conversations with your IT provider, which should be seamless through your electronic medical record.
  • Begin preparing for the upcoming quality measures from CMS to be required in 2013 and 2014.

Continue to read AGA eDigest for more information, including an FAQ received during the webinar. This webinar was the first in a series that will be offered by the three societies on the program. Look for the next AGA, ACG and ASGE-hosted webinar during the second quarter of 2012, after CMS releases additional program details.

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