American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Legislative and Regulatory Updates

ACS Submits Comments to FY 2022 IPPS Proposed Rule

This week, the ACS submitted a comment letter in response to the fiscal year (FY) FY 2022 Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) proposed rule, which was issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) in May. The letter focuses on key elements of the rule, including proposals to update policies related to Medicare graduate medical education for teaching hospitals, annual payment rates for operating room (OR) and non-OR procedures, and changes to various hospital quality programs. The ACS’ comments also offer feedback for the Agency’s requests for information, including recommendations and considerations for ways to address the health equity gap in Medicare quality programs and how to best support CMS’ goals to transition to digital quality measurement.

For more information about the proposed rule and College’s comments, contact regulatory@facs.org.

ACS Practice Protection Committee Updates Web Resources on Requirements for Provider Relief Fund

The Practice Protection Committee has updated the “Latest Updates” section of its web page to reflect changes recently made in reporting and repayment requirements for the Provider Relief Fund (PRF).

On June 11, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), released revised reporting requirements for recipients of Provider Relief Fund payments. The announcement included an extension of the amount of time recipients will have to report information and is intended to reduce the burden of reporting. It also extended the deadline for expending those PRF payments received after June 30, 2020. The revised reporting requirements are applicable to payments that exceed $10,000, in aggregate, during a single Payment Received Period.

The revised requirements can be found on the HHS website. A frequently asked questions document based on those revised requirements posted by HHS can be found on the Practice Protection Committee website.

Want to Learn More about General Surgery Coding? Register for Live ACS Surgical Coding Course

The ACS is offering a live surgical procedure coding course that covers everything important in general surgery coding, packed into an intensive six and one-half hours. The agenda covers all you need to know to code and document accurately and efficiently. The course provides in-depth and interesting instruction on coding for endoscopy, colorectal, breast, hernia, appendix, gall bladder, liver, intraabdominal tumor, pancreatic, and endocrine procedures. The course also will cover ways to improve notes and the use of surgical payment modifiers, leaving attendees armed with ideas and techniques for setting up systems that reduce denials and increase successful appeals.

The General Surgery coding courses will span two days and three courses—two half-day sessions focused on E/M and office procedure coding and one full-day session focused on surgical coding. The dates and locations for the courses are as follows:

For more information about the 2021 ACS coding courses visit the ACS website or e-mail practicemanagement@facs.org.

Register for Live E/M Coding Courses and Be Up to Date on Latest Guidelines

Starting January 1, 2021, two sets of guidelines came into play for E/M (evaluation and management) coding—one for new and established office/outpatient visits, and one for all other E/M encounters. To help clarify the guidelines, the ACS is offering live E/M coding courses later this year. One of the half-day E/M courses will focus on what determines code selection, including updated rules for using time and significant changes in the table for risk related to the decision for surgery. The second half-day course will continue discussing these critical updates to Medicare but expand on telehealth coding and cover coding for office-based procedures that general surgeons perform, such as biopsies, skin excisions, debridement, and more.

The General Surgery coding courses will span two days and three courses—two half-day sessions focused on E/M and office procedure coding and one full-day session focused on surgical coding. The dates and locations currently available for the courses are as follows:

For more information about the 2021 ACS coding courses, visit the ACS website or e-mail practicemanagement@facs.org.