The Washington State Department of Health is in the early stages of rulemaking on two important issues affecting ambulatory surgical facilities (ASFs). First, the department is deciding whether a Certificate of Need-approved ASF should require a new Certificate of Need upon expansion. Second, the department proposes updating the need forecasting methodology and standards for ASFs.
Both rules could have substantial impact on the way the department regulates ASFs, and could negatively impact hospital-based ASFs. One suggestion is that hospital ASFs should be included in the bed-need methodology for independent ASFs, under the notion that hospital-based ASFs are more expensive and may not be direct equivalents. WSHA strongly opposes this suggestion.
We are actively engaged with the department on this issue, and strongly encourage hospital participation. The next meeting on the ASF rulemaking is scheduled for Wednesday, September 16th. Click here for more information. (Zosia Stanley)