IFASC Newsletter
April 2023
President's Message
Hello! Spring has sprung and your ongoing support of IFASC continues to cultivate valuable initiatives. First and foremost, we’re looking forward to an Online Seminar on April 21st that’ll focus on HR Hot Topics. The AEU-accredited program features a well-regarded attorney who will address employment law issues and a widely cited consultant who is an expert on generational change and development.

Your membership has also funded vitally important representation at the Statehouse. Our lobbyist has an expert’s perspective on proposals that may impact the ASC industry, as well as the process by which those plans progress through the legislative process. 
In this day and age, a key ingredient of effective advocacy is political contributions. That leads me to another important undertaking – IFASC PAC. In the last few months, we re-established and re-vitalized our political action committee. Campaign contributions don’t convince any legislator of the merits of our causes, but they often help open the right doors at the right times. Your facility and/or key personnel can support these efforts. 
And finally, IFASC member dues allow us to plan and produce a ‘destination’ conference this year. I’m really looking forward to an expanded Fall Conference at the French Lick Resort. With a day-and-a-half program, you’ll have time to take advantage of the venue’s many amenities, whether that’s the casino, championship-level golf courses, or the spa, stables, or shooting range. Of course, I’m equally excited for an engaging program featuring nationally recognized speakers tackling Regulatory and Quality Measure Reporting, Leadership Development, Emergency Preparedness, and more. Register Today!

Please contact me at any time with comments, questions, or just to say hello.
Teleatha Mortimer, RN, BSN, CGRN, CASC
Indiana Federation of Ambulatory Surgical Centers
IFASC Update
CMS and Indiana Officials Detail Plans to "Unwind" Emergency Measures
With the announcement of the COVID public health emergency ending on May 11th, 2023, state and federal officials are outlining steps that will be taken as part of the operational unwinding. The CMS waivers impacted can be found here.
During the COVID-19 federal public health emergency, due to federal requirements, Indiana Medicaid members were able to keep their coverage without interruption. Indiana Medicaid will begin to process eligibility redetermination actions beginning April 2023, with a 12-month plan to return to normal operations. Details of this plan can be found here.

Finally, all emergency practitioner temporary licenses (identified as License No. CV#######) that have been issued as a result of Indiana's former PHE declaration and subsequent enactment, are set to expire and will terminate permanently on May 11.
Physician Non-Compete Ban Passes Indiana Senate
Senate Bill 7, which would ban employers from placing physicians under new non-compete agreements, passed Feb. 7. The legislation must be considered and approved by the House before April 17. If that doesn’t happen, the proposal would have to be re-introduced next year. The sponsor of the bill asserts, "Eliminating non-compete clauses would help increase competition among health care providers, which will lead to lower prices and more options for Hoosiers." Opponents, however, are concerned that a ban on non-competes would create "bidding wars" for physicians that drive up recruiting costs.
A new federal rule against noncompete clauses in work contracts could allow greater flexibility for physicians and other workers changing jobs. The FTC announced it is seeking public comment on a proposed rule that would bar noncompete clauses based on a preliminary finding that they are unfair to business competition.

Doctors say the clauses limit career growth, but hospitals say they need them to retain workers.
ASC Quality Reporting Deadline Approaching (ASCA Government Affairs Update)
As a reminder, the next deadline for submitting Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality Reporting (ASCQR) Program data for several measures is Monday, May 15. ASCs must submit 2022 data via the Hospital Quality Reporting secure portal for ASC-9: Endoscopy/Polyp Surveillance: Appropriate Follow-Up Interval for Normal Colonoscopy in Average Risk Patients, ASC-13: Normothermia and ASC-14: Unplanned Anterior Vitrectomy.

In addition, the next quarterly data submission deadline for ASC-20: COVID-19 Vaccination Coverage Among Health Care Personnel is also Monday, May 15, and covers the data collected in the fourth quarter of 2022, October 1 through December 31. For ASC-20, facilities must select one week per month on which to report to meet the quarterly submission requirement.
"Operation Nightingale": Fraudulent Nursing Diploma Scandal Exposed
The alleged scheme involved the selling of fake and fraudulent nursing degree diplomas and transcripts obtained from accredited Florida-based nursing schools to aspiring Registered Nurse (RN) and Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse (LPN/VN) candidates. The scheme involved the distribution of more than 7,600 fake nursing diplomas and transcripts. The Indiana Hospital Association and Hall Render put together a memo outlining this national licensure fraud activity and steps organizations should consider to address any concerns.
Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act of 2023 Reintroduced
On February 9, the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act of 2023 was reintroduced by Congressmen Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) and John Larson (D-CT) in the US House of Representatives and Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Bill Cassidy, MD (R-LA) in the US Senate.

Provisions in the legislation would:

  • require CMSto publish relevant quality data in a way that allows patients to compare quality across sites of service;
  • eliminate the copay penalty Medicare beneficiaries pay for certain Part B services when they are provided in an ASC;
  • provide transparency regarding the criteria CMS is using to exclude procedures from the ASC Covered Procedures List;
  • add an ASC representative to CMS’ Advisory Panel on Hospital Outpatient Payment, which makes decisions that affect both hospital outpatient department (HOPD) and ASC facility fees and eligible procedures; and
  • align the inflation update and budget neutrality adjustment for ASCs and HOPDs.

Your advocacy is critical in getting the attention and further support of policymakers. Please help secure the support of your members of Congress for the Outpatient Surgery Quality and Access Act of 2023 by using ASCA’s template letter to reach out and ask them to sign on to the bill as a cosponsor.
IFASC | info@ifasc.org | 847-517-7225