As technology has improved, more surgeries have moved from an inpatient to an outpatient setting. Ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) were created as a 'same day surgery' alternative for routine inpatient procedures for otherwise healthy patients. There are 432 licensed ASCs in Florida.
ASCs are not subject to the patient safety and quality standards necessary to ensure a patient has sufficient access to critical care services should a complication arise. In recognition of this, the state requires ASCs to maintain a collaborative agreement for transfer with a hospital at all times. The February 2014 issue of Medpage Today notes there is a "dearth of information" on adverse events after ambulatory surgery. In fact, another study found, during inspections of Medicare-certified ambulatory surgical centers, serious breaches of infection control practices were found to be common. Yet, very little information is available regarding infectious outcomes following ambulatory operations.
FHA supports maintaining the current system of care for patients who require overnight stays, including patient safety and quality standards, reporting metrics, financial and regulatory requirements for hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers as dictated in Florida Statutes and administrative code.
For more information, contact FHA Vice President of Government Affairs Crystal Stickle.