News Items

Celebrating One Year of ASCRS U

ASCRS U, the premier online resource for practicing and in-training colorectal surgeons, celebrates its one-year anniversary. Over the past year, ASCRS U has proven to be an exceptional educational resource for students, residents, and practicing surgeons alike, offering easy access to a wealth of educational content, webinars, Clinical Practice Guidelines, and much more.
Since its launch in March 2022, ASCRS U has been an incredibly popular platform, with a total of 179,036 content views across all devices. That averages out to an impressive 447.59 content views per day since launch, which speaks volumes about the quality and relevance of the content available on the platform.
One of the most notable features of ASCRS U is the ability to favorite content, and since launch, the top three most favorited channels have been the ASCRS Textbook of Colon and Rectal Surgery, the ASCRS Question Bank, and the Fundamentals of Rectal Cancer Surgery. Among the most favorited content on ASCRS U are the Textbook Chapter: Anastomotic ConstructionClinical Practice Guideline (CPG): Use of Bowel Preparation in Elective Colon and Rectal Surgery, our webinar: Pilonidal Disease, and our Video Mentorship Series Session: Finding the correct TME plane.
ASCRS U also offers on-demand recordings of live virtual education, with over 40 recordings available in the Webinars and Video Mentorship Series channels alone. Since launch, 29 webinars have been added to the platform, with 367 CME credits claimed. Additionally, eight Video Mentorship Series Sessions have been added since launch.
To further enhance the educational experience, ASCRS U has added new channels since its launch. These include the Video-Based Education Channel, which offers 21 didactic videos from the Diseases of the Colon and Rectum (DC&R)/ASCRS peer-reviewed video library. The Annual Meeting Videos channel features over 30 videos from past ASCRS Annual Scientific Meetings, while the IBD Surgery Debates channel features a moderated series of debates by experts in the field of Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
ASCRS U has become an invaluable resource and we look forward to seeing the continued growth and development of the platform in the years to come. Download the ASCRS U mobile app to your smartphone and tablet for access anytime, anywhere.


Access ASCRS U Education portal here:

Meet the 2023 Honorary Fellows

Each year the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) recognizes up to six Honorary Fellows. Honorary Fellowship is designed to honor individuals, regardless of specialty, in recognition of their outstanding achievements and contributions to the field of colon and rectal surgery and allied fields. Nominees for Honorary Fellow should have made significant contributions to the peer reviewed literature, advancement and/or fostering of innovation, and education in the specialty of colon and rectal surgery or allied fields; demonstrated significant and/or sustained leadership within their country, national or regional society; developed and promulgated significant advances (clinical, research and/or technological) in the field of colon and rectal surgery and allied fields.

The Executive Council and members of the Honorary Fellowship Committee are pleased to present the 2023 Honorary Fellows.

Professor Sebastiano Biondo, Spain
Professor of Surgery, University of Barcelona
PhD, University of Barcelona
Chief of General and Digestive Surgery at Bellvitge University Hospital
Interests-colorectal cancer, diverticular disease, wound closure and surgical site infections
Collaborator of ORALEV, Turnbull-BCN, and DIVER trials and co-PI or investigator of multiple other trials
Past President of Spanish Society of Coloproctology and Catalan Surgical Society
Editor of Spanish Journal of Surgery and editorial board of British Journal of Surgery
Dr. Cesar Decanini, Mexico
Chair of Surgery at American British Hospital, Mexico City
Program director of oldest MIS fellowship
Clinical interests in MIS, robotic surgery and surgical staplers
Opened first colorectal clinic in the Army Hospital in Mexico City
Trained hundreds of surgeons and seen as the surgeon who advanced the specialty of colon and rectal surgery in Mexico and other countries in Central and Latin America
Widely regarded as “El Maestro”/Master Surgeon in Mexico and key opinion leader in colon and rectal surgery
Under his guidance over a dozen Mexican surgeons completed colon and rectal residencies in the US
Translated Essentials of Anorectal Surgery (Goldberg, Gordon, Nivatvongs) into Spanish
Professor Jin Gu, China
Professor of Surgical Oncology
Chief of Colorectal Surgery, Peking University Cancer Hospital
President of Peking University SG Hospital
Editorial board of Chinese Journal of General Surgery
Past President of Chinese Anti-cancer Society, Colorectal Cancer Association and Chinese Society of Oncology
Vice President of Beijing Medical Association
Clinical and research interests in radioimmunoguided surgery in colorectal cancer, TME, pelvic autonomic nerve preservation
Led trial of Intermediate Fraction neoadjuvant radiotherapy for rectal cancer (DCR 2013)
Professor Gabriela Moeslein (MD), Germany
Professor of Surgery, University of Dusseldorf
Director of the Center for Hereditary Tumors Evanglisches Krankenhaus Bethesda zum Duisburg Academic Hospital of University of Dusseldorf
Research and clinical interests - hereditary colorectal cancer, colorectal cancer
Chair of research committee, European Society of Coloproctology (ESCP)
Director of European Hereditary Tumor Group
On the Board of several patient advocacy groups for Lynch syndrome and Hereditary cancer
Secretary of ESCP
Program chair of ESCP
2022 ISUCRS Angelita Habr Gama Award
Willem Rudolf Schouten MD, PhD, Netherlands
Prior Chief of Colorectal Surgery, University of Rotterdam
PhD in 1990 for research on internal anal sphincter specifically the effects of sphincterotomy on perianal fistula and fissure
Pioneering force in establishment of colorectal surgery as a legitimate specialty for the Netherlands and Europe
Director, Rotterdam Colorectal Research group and served as mentor for many researchers who wrote their PhD thesis
Key opinion leader in Dutch and European surgery
Authored first Dutch colorectal surgery guideline (2003) on hemorrhoids
Research and clinical interests-pelvic floor, basic colorectal physiology, perianal fistula, pouchitis, nitric oxide role in anal sphincter hypertonia and fissure, rectal cancer
TME proctor for the Dutch randomized TME trial
Mr. Baljit Singh, UK
Consultant, University of Leicester
Associate Professor of Surgery
Clinical and research interests-colorectal cancer, screening FIT, TATME, IBE
Chair of Education Committee, European Society of Coloproctology (ESCP)
Vice Chair of NICE Technology Appraisal Committee
Involved in national introduction of new technologies including colon capsule and FIT
Chair of NHS Specialized Colorectal Service Clinical References Group
Chair of the East Midlands Cancer Alliance Group
Executive Board ASGBI and ACPGI
Recipient of RCOS Louis Alexander fellowship, ACS International guest Scholar, ESCP Japanese Traveling Fellow, ASCRS travel scholarship
Developed NICE colorectal cancer guidelines and quality standards for colorectal cancer (2022)

We hope you will join us in Seattle June 3-6, 2023 to meet our honorees.  

ASCRS Announces Premier Sponsorship from Takeda


Takeda, a global biopharmaceutical leader headquartered in Japan with a global hub in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has joined The American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) as one of its inaugural Premier Sponsors, a program that represents the highest-level opportunity for companies to differentiate themselves and support their strategic interest to ASCRS members and audiences. Premier Sponsors receive year-round recognition and premium positioning as part of the exclusive sponsorship.

“Through the newly launched Premier Sponsors program, ASCRS is reaching new heights in collaboration with our industry partners. We’re thrilled to have Takeda as a charter member and look forward to the next several years of exciting work,” said Conor Delaney, MD, PhD, ASCRS President.

ASCRS Executive Director David Westman, CPA, CAE stated, “ASCRS is thrilled to collaborate with Takeda as we launch our Premier Sponsor program. Our Premier Sponsors work with our Society and membership to strategically move the colon and rectal surgical specialty forward. We look forward to many successful years together.”

“Takeda is excited to support ASCRS and its members in their important work of advancing the understanding, prevention and treatment of colon and rectal disorders,” said Vijay Yajnik, MD, PhD, vice president, head of U.S. Medical for Gastroenterology at Takeda. “Patient care is best enhanced when we work together to address the most complex and significant unmet needs with solutions extending beyond medicine alone.”

Takeda’s work in gastroenterology focuses on GI inflammation, short bowel syndrome, liver disease and motility disorders.

“For more than 30 years, Takeda and our collaborative partners have worked to improve the lives of people with gastrointestinal diseases,” said Gamze Yüceland, senior vice president, Gastroenterology Business Unit at Takeda. “Through partnerships like this, we can deepen connections among the community and work together to ensure patients living with colon and rectal disorders can achieve their best possible quality of life.”

Learn more about the Premier Sponsorship here.

For further information about Premier Sponsorships, contact Jason Keith, Sr. Director, Corporate Relations | Marketing and Communications at [email protected].

About The American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons
The American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons is a professional society for healthcare providers specializing in colorectal surgery. ASCRS is dedicated to ensuring high-quality patient care by advancing the science, prevention and management of disorders and diseases of the colon, rectum and anus.

Meet the ASCRS AMA Representatives Who Serve ASCRS in Key Roles

House of Delegates (HOD)
In 2022, based on a census of ASCRS members who are also members of the AMA, ASCRS was awarded a second Delegate and Alternate Delegate to the AMA House of Delegates. Delegate and Alternate Delegate Drs. Harry Papaconstantinou and Ronald Gagliano announced their intention to resign effective EOY 2022, after 10 years of service to ASCRS and after offering to participate in orientation for the new Delegates and Alternate Delegates. A subcommittee of the Healthcare Economics Committee (HEC) received interest in the delegate positions from several members. Ultimately Drs. Anne Mongiu and Juan (Lucas) Poggio were selected as delegates, and Drs. Paul Johnson and Sachin Vaid were selected as alternates. The delegates will serve for three years.
Current Procedural Terminology (CPT)
In September 2022, Dr. William Harb, who served as Advisor to the AMA CPT Advisory Committee, offered his resignation. The HEC followed a similar process for a replacement, naming Dr. Eric Weiss as Advisor and Dr. Joshua Eberhardt as Alternate Advisor. Dr. Weiss has served ASCRS in the role in the past.
RVS Update Committee​ (RUC)
In May 2022, Dr. Guy Orangio, ASCRS Past President and RUC Advisor, indicated his interest in stepping down after many years of service. As with the HOD and CPT reps, the HEC invited applicants, and selected Dr. Kelly Tyler to replace Dr. Orangio as RUC Advisor. Dr. Tyler joins Dr. Stephen Sentovich, Alternate Advisor, on the RUC.
While in their roles, AMA Delegates and Advisors and their alternates serve as members of the ASCRS Healthcare Economics Committee.

Update from the Healthcare Economics Committee: Current issues in Coding and Reimbursement

CMS Coding Update 2023
  • Only 2% cut in Medicare payment 
    • 8.5% Medicare cut averted with year-end legislation
  • Telehealth extended through 2024
    • Current codes for provision of telehealth service will remain unchanged this year
  • Update to E/M codes
    • Change documentation requirements and use Medical Decision Making or Total Time the day of service to determine level of service 
    • When using total time and the time exceeds the highest-level code - a prolonged services code can be added
    • Initial Inpatient/Observation codes (99221-3)   
      • *Note:  observation visits to use these codes as all observation specific codes have been deleted
    • Subsequent Inpatient/Observation codes (99231-3)
    • Same day observation/discharge codes (99234-6)
    • Inpatient consultation codes (99252-5)
    • Outpatient consultation codes (99242-5)
  • New abdominal wall hernia codes any method (open, laparoscopic, robotic) based on size, reducible/incarcerated and initial/recurrent
    • The new codes have zero-day global period so all preop visits and postoperative visits are billable using outpatient or inpatient E/M visit codes
    • Mesh placement is included in the new hernia codes
    • If you are removing the mesh, there is a new code for removal
    • All abdominal wall hernia types are included: epigastric, ventral, umbilical and parastomal  
    • Inguinal, femoral and lumbar hernias are excluded from this change
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