Amblitel News & Events


Archive for March, 2015

New Bill May Alter Meaningful Use Among ASCs

Added 03.13.15

Ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) — medical facilities that offer same-day surgeries as well as diagnostic and preventive care — do not have the same benefits as other healthcare institutions since there are no EHR products certified specifically for ASCs. Normally this would severely limit their ability to meet at least half of the meaningful use requirements and lead to a payment penalty. However, the House Ways and Means Committee voted in favor of the Electronic Health Fairness Act on February 27, which would exempt ASCs from the meaningful use program. The bill states that ASCs were not covered under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009, which developed certification standards strictly for hospitals and physician... more...

Bill That Aims to Reform North Carolina Surgeries Hits Lawmaker Floor

Added 03.13.15

A proposed law to bring major changes to surgery centers in North Carolina hit the legislative floor on Wednesday, 3/11/2015. Already, House Bill 200 was referred to three committees, a sign that lawmakers will take it seriously. In short, the new law would deregulate the process by which health care providers establish ambulatory surgery centers – those collections of operating rooms that perform outpatient procedures. Read the rest of this article from Triangle Business Journal at: more...

House Committee Passes Bill Exempting Ambulatory Surgical Centers from EHR Program

Added 03.11.15

On February 27, the House Ways and Means Committee passed the Electronic Health Fairness Act (HR 887), which would exempt ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) from the EHR Incentive Program. ... Under the EHR Incentive Program, hospitals and eligible professionals that demonstrate the meaningful use of electronic health records qualify for Medicaid and Medicare incentive payments.  They may also be penalized for failing to meaningfully use EHR.  Eligible professionals must demonstrate that 50% or more of their outpatient encounters occur at locations equipped with EHR technology in order to be considered a meaningful user. The Electronic Health Fairness Act would exempt “any patient encounter . . . occurring at an ambulatory surgical center from being treated as such an encounter” when determining whether the professional qualifies for EHR... more...

Federal appeals court expands definition of ‘referral’ under Anti-Kickback Statute

Added 03.11.15

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has expanded the definition of "referral" under the Anti-Kickback Statute, causing some provider arrangements that were once safe to now implicate the Anti-Kickback Statute, according to a National Law Review report. In the case of U.S. v. Patel, the court held a violation of the statute can occur when a healthcare provider authorizes a patient for specialist treatment even without referring a patient to a specific specialist, according to the report. Read the rest of this article from Becker's Hospital Review at: more...

The Affordable Care Act: Early Verdict Is Decidedly Mixed

Added 03.11.15

Patient deductibles and insurance company profits are too high, say readers. How is Obamacare affecting outpatient surgical facilities? Our poll of physicians and administrators strongly reflects the deep divide that characterizes the national debate about healthcare reform. Some say it's hurting business. Some say it's helping. Some say it goes way too far. Some say it doesn't go far enough. Almost half say they'd like to see the law repealed, but more than half wouldn't, or at least wouldn't unless there's a better way to reduce the vast number of uninsured Americans. Others say patience is the key. Read the rest of this article from Outpatient Surgery Magazine at: more...