Staying Positive During the Pandemic

The good news for patients in need of outpatient surgery is that, across the country, health care providers and policymakers have recognized that elective surgery is not the same thing as optional surgery and are allowing ASCs to remain open to provide this care.

Handling of Explanted Medical Devices Addressed in AORN’s Revised Guideline for Specimen Management

SP professionals must manage explants safely and properly any time a request is made to sterilize an explanted device, such a screw, hip, plate and so on, for return to the patient.

Disinfection Methods – Straightforward or Complicated?

With all the different cleaning, disinfecting and sterilizing processes that go on inside of hospitals, I find disinfection to be the most complex and complicated among them.

Steam Sterilization Standard ST79 Receives Community-Driven Update

After three years, a widely used standard in health care and industry has undergone an important update.

AAAHC Awards its First Advanced Orthopaedic Certification

The Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) recently awarded the Minnesota Valley Surgery Center (Burnsville, MN) with the first AAAHC Advanced Orthopaedic Certification—since its official launch in October 2018—focusing on total joint replacements. The certification is designed for ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) that provide a high quality of care and comply with rigorous, specialty-focused standards.

“We perform a variety of orthopaedic procedures and our patients know they can turn to us for expert medical care,” said Total Joint Medical Director, Robert Hartman, M.D. of the Minnesota Valley Surgery Center. “Building upon our ongoing compliance to AAAHC Accreditation requirements, our Advanced Orthopaedic Certification emphasizes our commitment to continually improving our orthopaedic processes and performance.”

To achieve Advanced Orthopaedic Certification, the Minnesota Valley Surgery Center underwent a rigorous onsite survey. Surveyors evaluated the ASC’s approach to the continuum of care for total joint replacement patients, beginning with the pre-admission consultation and education, surgery, discharge follow-up, and rehabilitation. The center demonstrated use of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines, ongoing performance improvement strategies, and an effective organizational infrastructure aimed at providing safe and effective care.

“The Minnesota Valley Surgery Center has demonstrated its dedication to ongoing learning and staying 1095 Strong throughout the 1,095-days between surveys that is key to building best practices and long-term results,” said Noel Adachi, MBA, president and CEO of AAAHC. “We are proud to partner with a surgery center that has invested in ongoing quality improvement and prioritizes patient safety and quality of care across all teams and departments.”

This three-year certification program, launched in the fall of 2018, was designed by an expert panel of practicing professionals in orthopaedic and spine procedures. AAAHC-Accredited organizations wanting to achieve this certification may choose from two types of advanced certification, total joint or complex spine. Centers can also pursue a combined certification that addresses both specialties.

The Minnesota Valley Surgery Center joins two ASCs, the Surgery Center of Long Beach (Long Beach, CA) and the Gold Coast Surgicenter (Chicago, IL), who both received certification during the soft launch phase.

To contact the AAAHC Orthopaedic Certification Team, email, call 847-853-6060, or visit



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