Ambulatory Surgical Care Model

Lowering the Cost of Excellence in

Ambulatory Surgical Care

As one of the fastest growing sectors of health care delivery, ambulatory surgical care currently accounts for $209 billion dollars, or 8%, of domestic health care spending. Yet it is also highly inefficient, providing vast opportunities for improvement of the patient experience.

CERC’s surgical care design team set out to safely reduce spending for ambulatory surgery through these three core elements:

·      Reduction of the volume of surgeries, targeting overuse, through the routine use of patient decision aids, provider clinical decision support, and primary care provider case coaching.

·      Resetting the location of the majority of elective ambulatory surgery to free-standing ambulatory surgical centers operating with expanded hours (18 hours a day/7 days a week).

·      Standardizing processes through the implementation of coordinated transitions, homogenized inputs, and streamlined operations.

A conservative estimate of national savings from full implementation of the CERC surgical model is $45 billion per year in direct health care spending by the end of year five, or 21% of annual domestic spending on outpatient surgical care.

Team: Kimberly Brayton, MD, JD, Feryal Erhun, PhD, Maziyar Kalani, MD, Christine Nguyen, Terry Platchek, MD, Donna Zulman, MD, MS, Arnold Milstein, MD, MPH


Published by CERC Faculty or Fellows


Opportunities to Improve the Value of Outpatient Surgical Care

The American Journal of Managed Care. Sep 2016; 22(9):329-335