Advocacy Update
NCASCA Legislative Update 4-01-19

On Wednesday, March 27th, NCASCA members participated in Legislative Day.  They met with members of both the North Carolina House and Senate, educating them on the value of ambulatory surgery centers in their communities and discussing important industry issues.  Led by NCASCA Legislative Director Dick Carlton, these ASC leaders met with Representative Josh Dobson, who is also Chairman of the House Health Committee and Senator Jim Perry, who is a member of the Senate Health Care Committee and Appropriations on Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

 Pictured here are (left to right) James Shafer, Dick Carlton, Jamie Ridout,  Representative Josh Dobson, Matthew Kersten, Rob Bashore, John Cooper, and Sean Rambo. 

NCASCA thanks Jamie Ridout of Capital City Surgery Center, James Shafer of Wilmington Surgcare, Matthew Kersten of Mallard Creek Surgery Center, Rob Bashore of Gateway Surgery Center, and Sean Rambo of Compass Surgery Partners for participating in this event.  Thank you for your efforts to advance the ASC industry in Raleigh!  

 Pictured here are (left to right) Sean Rambo, John Cooper, Dick Carlton, Senator Jim Perry, Matthew Kersten, Jamie Ridout, James Shafer and Rob Bashore.

NCASCA Legislative Update 3-21-19

The North Carolina General Assembly is in full swing for the 2019-2020 Session.  The big change this year is that the Republican leadership in the House and the Senate no longer have veto proof majorities.  NCASCA is closely monitoring the following bills this session for our members.  

HB 184- Study State Health Plan Design:  This bill was introduced to appoint an experienced committee to look at the State Health Plan and to develop a responsible way to reduce the costs for State Employees.  The State Treasurer has proposed significant cuts that would be very problematic for the State's hospitals, especially in the rural areas.

HB 173- Act to Exempt Ocular Surgery from CON Laws:  NCASCA has been carefully monitoring CON issues since it is a hot topic in health care.  This bill appears to be the first attempt to amend CON requirements.  After reviewing the facts and circumstances around this bill, we do not believe it will move very far in the legislative process.   

HB 70 Delay NC Health Connex for Certain Providers:  If you recall, NCASCA was successful in obtaining an extension for ASCs to begin submitting demographic and clinical data to the HIE network.  This bill is a vehicle for other healthcare providers are following our lead in trying to get extensions for their provider types.  NCASCA's goal is to get a permanent exemption for ambulatory surgical centers.    

HB 43-Establish Standards for Surgical Technology:  We have been working on this bill for two years to to ensure it is not overly burdensome to ASCs.  The idea behind the bill has merit, but we need to make sure there are no unintended consequences.  It does include language regarding exemption for rural areas and a grandfathering provision  However, we believe this language still needs additional work.  

NCASCA Legislative Update 12-03-18

Election day made things more interesting in the North Carolina General Assembly.  The Republicans lost their veto proof margin in the House of Representatives.  The votes were still to close to call the day after the election to say whether or not the Republicans lost their veto proof majority in the Senate .  Either way, this will make the Governor's veto power much more relevant in the upcoming long session in January.  The General Assembly has, however, scheduled a Special Session for November 27, 2018.  At this time it is unclear what that agenda will be.  The Long Session will begin in mid-January and any matter may be brought up during that session.  The new members will be sworn in at that time.  NCASCA's priorities will be:

  1.  Advocating for a total exemption to the HIE reporting requirements;
  2. Monitoring legislation regarding significant changes to the Certificate of Need laws;
  3. Advocating for proper reimbursement policies within the Workers' Compensation program;
  4. Defending reimbursement and proper payment policies by the State Health Plan;
  5. Monitoring legislation requiring certification of surgical techs for unnecessarily burdensome requirements; and
  6. Responding to any additional health care bills impacting ASCs

Take time out now during the next couple of months to meet your legislator if you do not already know him or her.  These relationships are invaluable for our grassroots efforts.  NCASCA will be planning another day at the General Assembly so please try to make time to participate.  We had a very productive day at the Legislature this year.  

NC Health Information Exchange Network Deadline

The North Carolina General Assembly passed a law in 2015 that is beginning to affect health care providers this year. The law created the North Carolina Health Information Exchange Authority (NC HIEA) to oversee and administer the NC Health Information Exchange Network.

USA Today and KHN Story

Surgery Centers across the country were shocked on Friday, March 2 and over the weekend as USA Today and Kaiser Health News released an unbalanced and critical investigative report on ambulatory surgery centers. The investigative report, which eschews facts and telling both sides of the story in favor of an overwhelming