The Joint Replacement Certification with Distinction for Ambulatory Surgery Centers (ASC) program from HFAP was recently approved to be included in the Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) Blue Distinction Specialty Care program, HFAP reports.

The goal of the BCBS Blue Distinction Specialty Care program is to help consumers find both quality and value for their specialty care needs, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the overall quality and delivery of healthcare nationwide. The Blue Distinction Specialty Care program offers two levels of designation:

  • Blue Distinction Centers (BDC): Recognized for their expertise in delivering specialty care.
  • Blue Distinction Centers+ (BDC+): Recognized for their expertise and cost-efficiency in delivering specialty care.

“Many of the HFAP Standards for the Joint Replacement Certification with Distinction overlap with the criteria for acceptance into the BCBS Blue Distinction Specialty Care program – focusing on quality, cost-efficiency and access to care,” says Deanna Scatena, RN, BSN, assistant director, Certification Operations for HFAP, in a media release.

“Both programs aim to help well-performing ASCs and hospitals differentiate themselves to consumers, while enabling them to gain BCBS reimbursement at a higher level for total joint replacement procedures.”

To achieve the Joint Replacement Certification with Distinction from HFAP, organizations must meet the following criteria:

  • Hold current accreditation with deemed status or Medicare certification by the state
  • Meet licensure requirements within the state
  • Maintain compliance with all applicable HFAP certification standards
  • Define the population served by its joint replacement program within its protocols
  • Provide a minimum of 12 consecutive months of applicable performance measures (or one month of data prior to submitting an application for initial certification)

Healthcare organizations that meet these rigorous requirements demonstrate their commitment to quality care, treatment expertise, and better overall patient results, earning them a place on the list of BCBS Blue Distinction Centers for Knee and Hip Replacement, the release continues.

“As more patients seek joint replacement surgeries and especially as the number of procedures performed in the outpatient setting continues to rise, it is important for provider organizations to articulate their dedication to safety and quality to both patients and payors,” Scatena states. “With the HFAP certification, ASCs performing total joint replacement procedures can stand out from competitors and strengthen the bottom line.”

[Source: HFAP]