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H.R. 1838: Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality and Access Act of 2017

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Mar 30, 2017.


Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality and Access Act of 2017

This bill amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to: (1) require the payment system for ambulatory surgical center (ASC) services to feature certain positive annual adjustments equivalent to those made with respect to hospital outpatient department (OPD) services; (2) revise quality reporting requirements to permit publicly available, side-by-side comparisons of quality measures for ASCs and OPDs in the same geographic area; and (3) require the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), when excluding requested procedures from the list of those approved to be performed in ASCs, to cite specified reasons for doing so.

With respect to excluding procedures from the approved list for ASCs, HHS may not cite as a basis for exclusion that a procedure can only be reported using an unlisted surgical procedure code. (Physicians sometimes use unlisted codes when performing new procedures or services if no existing code is adequately descriptive.)