Why Use an Ambulatory Surgery Center?

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Why use an ASC?

The advancement of medical technology and anesthesia in recent years has allowed many procedures to be performed safely in an ASC setting with high-quality outcomes. Procedures can be done safely and effectively with excellent self-reports and documented responses of high patient satisfaction. The less-invasive procedures performed in ASCs also result in reduced recovery periods and earlier return to work and daily activities. With minimal tissue violation in many of the laparoscopic procedures, incisional pain and scar tenderness can also be reduced.


Reimbursement changes, specifically, the tightening of reimbursement for medical services, has also caused health care providers to look at ways to increase operational efficiency, reduce costs for performing services, and increase customer services. These are the tenets of ASC services.


To contact an ambulatory surgery center in your area, go to our OAASC Contacts page and click on the center name.


Ambulatory Surgery Center Statistics

2007 OAASC Member Statistics - click here for full document

  • Average numbers procedures performed in one day - 19
  • Average number of procedures per year -5000
  • 30-Day infection rates are less than 1/10 of 1%
  • 70% of procedures started within 7 minutes of their scheduled start time
  • Average number of FTE's per facility - 24
  • Average supply cost is $180 per patient
  • Patients are twice as likely to cancel a procedure than the physician - the chance of a physician canceling a procedure is less than 1%
  • Multiple Specilty centers make up 73% of all ASCs
  • Single Specialties make up 18% and Eye Centers make up 10% of ASC
  • Eye Centers perform 5 times more procedures than other ASC type

United States Statistics

  • First U.S. Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) in 1969
  • 1969-1982 slow but consistent growth
  • 1982 - 14% of all surgeries are performed in ASCs
  • 1982 Medicare approved reimbursement for ASCs
  • 1990 - Less than 1,200 ASCs nationally, 2.5 million procedures
  • 1997 - 70% of all surgeries are outpatient
  • 2000 - 2,700 ASCs nationwide, providing more than 6 million procedures
  • 2000 - over 2,100 ASCs were Medicare-certified
  • 90% of the nation's ASCs perform less than 3,500 surgeries per year
  • 9% of the nation's ASCs perform more than 5,000 surgeries per year

• Ophthalmology, Gastroenterology, and OB/GYN are the most frequently performed ASC procedures