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New ASC Conditions for Coverage Have Taken Effect

Ambulatory Surgery Centers (“ASCs”) need to take note of additional federal Conditions for Coverage (“CFCs”) governing patient rights that took effect May 18, 2009. The Amendments to these CFCs, which the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published on November 18, 2008, are codified at “Part 416 – Ambulatory Surgical Services” (42 CFR 416.50).

According to the amendment, the ASC is required to:

  • notify the patient of his or her rights both verbally and in writing prior to the patient’s procedure,
  • inform the patient of its policies regarding advance directives, and document the patient’s decision to use an advanced directive in his or her chart,
  • and establish a policy to document and respond to patient grievances.

The patient has the right to:

  • employ his or her rights,
  • file grievances,
  • and receive complete information about the procedure he or she is to receive prior to its inception.

The patient also has the right to:

  • privacy,
  • safety,
  • and freedom from maltreatment.

Finally, the ASC must comply with the rules governing the privacy and security of individually identifiable health information.

In sum, ASCs need to ensure that they enact (or, as necessary, modify any existing) policies and procedures to conform with the requirements under the new CFCs. Further, insofar as these obligations already have become effective, it is imperative that ASCs act expeditiously to create or amend those patient rights’ policies required by the CFCs.

For the full text of the amendment, please click here.

For more information regarding ASCs, please call Carey F. Kalmowitz, Esq. or Abby Pendleton, Esq., or Adrienne Dresevic, Esq. at (248) 996-8510, visit The HLP website’s Compliance and HIPAA page, or visit The HLP website.

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