American Society of Plastic Surgeons
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Maryland Works to Improve Facility Accreditation Standards for Cosmetic Procedures

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the Maryland Society of Plastic Surgeons have serious concerns about the types of procedures that are being performed under local anesthesia in order to circumvent the state's existing facility requirements for procedures performed under general anesthesia.

Currently, Maryland law does not require facility standards for procedures performed under local anesthesia. Physicians who perform surgeries under local anesthesia – including breast augmentations, breast lifts and abdominoplasties – to avoid facility requirements are potentially jeopardizing patient care if the procedure is not performed within an accredited facility. To address this concern, the Maryland Society of Plastic Surgeons introduced legislation, H.B.1278, which will require surgeons to perform breast augmentations, breast lifts, breast reductions, abdominoplasties and facelifts in facilities that are accredited by AAAASF, AAAHC, JCAHO or are certified to participate in Medicare. The ASPS Task Force on Patient Safety in Office-based Surgery Facilities released a statement in 2002 that supports the facility standards listed within H.B.1278.

The legislation was heard for discussion only on March 14 before the House Health and Government Operations Committee. The Maryland Society of Plastic Surgeons testified before the committee in support of the bill, and ASPS submitted written comments also supporting the legislation. The Maryland Society is now working closely with the Maryland Board of Physicians and the state Office of Health Care Quality regarding nuances of the bill. The Maryland Society hopes to advance this legislation before the end of the state's legislative session on April 11.