The AAAASF was established in 1980 with the primary mission of ensuring the highest quality patient care in the ambulatory surgery setting. Today, with more than 1000 accredited outpatient surgical facilities, the not-for-profit AAAASF is the largest accrediting organization of its kind in the United States.

Setting the standard in quality patient care

 There is more to having surgery than just selecting your surgeon. AAAASF has designed an accrediting program to help provide patients with the assurance of safety and quality in all aspects of their outpatient surgery experience. To achieve this goal, every AAAASF-accredited ambulatory surgery facility must meet stringent national standards for equipment, operating safety, personnel and surgeon credentials. The experts at AAAASF know that maintaining safety and quality in the ambulatory surgery facility is a dynamic process, requiring constant review and revision of standards to reflect the current state-of-the-art. As the leading accrediting organization, AAAASF has developed the systems to effectively monitor and implement the latest advances in outpatient care delivery-advances that directly benefit patients.

AAAASF accreditation has been recognized as the gold standard. The vast majority of ambulatory surgery facilities are unaccredited, operating independent of any peer review and inspection process. A growing number of states throughout the country, however, are recognizing the need for mandatory accreditation. AAAASF is in the forefront of legislative efforts to provide patients with safety and quality assurance in the outpatient surgery setting.

In 1996, California became the first state to mandate accreditation for all outpatient facilities that administer sedation or general anesthesia. AAAASF was instrumental in the development of the California legislation (AB 595) as well as subsequent laws and regulations adopted by states such as Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Texas. AAAASF accreditation guidelines have been recognized as the “gold standard,” providing the highest level of safety and quality in ambulatory surgical care.

The Highest Standards of Safety

AAAASF-accredited facilities must meet stringent requirements. All AAAASF-accredited facilities must:

  • Comply with applicable local, state, and federal regulations including fire safety, sanitation and building codes for the protection of patients and medical personnel
  • Adhere to federal laws and regulations affecting their operation such as OSHA blood-borne pathogens standards, hazardous waste standards, and the Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Utilize advanced instruments and monitoring devices for patient safety during surgery and in the recovery period
  • Allow surgery to be performed only by qualified surgeons who have privileges to perform the same surgical procedures in an accredited hospital. Surgeons must meet the standards, such as peer-review and continuing medical education, required for operating in an accredited hospital. Surgeons must be certified (or eligible for certification) in surgical specialties recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. This is an important distinction between AAAASF and other organizations that may not require this high standard of qualifications for physicians operating within their accredited facilities
  • Provide for the administration of general anesthesia, when appropriate, by a board-certified or board-eligible anesthesiologist or a certified registered nurse anesthetist. Other personnel assisting in surgery and providing care for the patient in the recovery room include specially trained and certified surgical technicians, registered nurses, and licensed practical nurses

Please contact us today with any questions or comments about AAAASF-accredited facilities.