THIS WEEK'S ARTICLES
The Opening of a New ASC in Florida Showcases Outpatient Trends - Sponsored Content
New Ortho Center of Excellence Opens in Tennessee
The collaborative Knoxville facility features an ASC and orthopedic urgent care center.
This summer, the University of Tennessee (UT) Medical Center opened The Orthopaedic Institute at the UT Research Park at Cherokee Farm in Knoxville. A Center of Excellence that replaces UT's former Advanced Orthopaedic Center, the 91,000-square-foot, three-story building includes an orthopedic ambulatory surgery center (ASC) as well as patient exam rooms, on-site imaging diagnostics, physical therapy and rehabilitative care.
The facility, a collaborative effort among The University of Tennessee Medical Center, OrthoTennessee and University Orthopaedic Surgeons, pledges to offer comprehensive orthopedic care, along with a focus on musculoskeletal research. OrthoTennessee relocated the existing University Orthopaedic Surgeons clinic from UT Medical Center's main campus to the new building, which is just across the street. Approximately 150 employees, including 14 orthopedic surgeons, work at the new building, caring for around 250 patients daily through surgeries, clinic visits, and imaging and therapy services.
The outpatient facility is conveniently located just outside the city center, with free parking. The ASC, located on the first floor, features five ORs and an advanced imaging center. The building also features a walk-in orthopedic urgent care facility that provides immediate treatment for acute bone, joint and muscle injuries.
"This partnership with OrthoTennessee and University Orthopaedic Surgeons combines outstanding orthopedic clinical and surgical knowledge with a research collaboration to address the growing needs of our community," says Joe Landsman, president and CEO of The University of Tennessee Medical Center.
Learn and see more about the facility in this YouTube video produced by Realty Trust Group, the real estate development partner for the project.
How Safe Is Outpatient Spine?
Complication rates are low, but also many and varied.
A systematic review of the current literature shed light on just how safe it is to perform spine surgery at ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs).
The study performed by researchers from the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, published in Clinical Spine Surgery, aimed to determine the rates of complications in relation to spine surgery in ASCs. "Recent improvements in anesthesia, surgical techniques and technological advances have facilitated a rise in the use of ASCs," write the researchers. "Despite the benefits and lower costs associated with ASCs, there is inconsistent reporting of complication rates."
The query covered nearly two dozen studies involving 11,245 patients involving numerous techniques, including open surgery, minimally invasive surgery, endoscopic, microsurgery and combined techniques. It found the following rates of complications: cardiac (0.29%), vascular (0.25%), pulmonary (0.60%), gastrointestinal (1.12%), musculoskeletal/spine/operative (0.59%), urologic (0.80%), transient neurological (0.67%), persistent neurological (0.61%), pain related (0.57%) and wound site (0.68%).
"This is the first study to comprehensively analyze the current state of literature reporting on the complication profile of all ASC spine surgery procedures," the authors wrote. Although the researchers found that case reports varied significantly with regard to the type and rate of complications reported, they believe their study provides complication profiles that will assist surgeons in counseling patients on the most realistic expectations.
As more ASCs ramp up spine service lines, they can feel assured that specific complications are rare, but given the wide variety of potential complications, they should proceed carefully and thoughtfully. However, outpatient spine centers can take heart from the low rates across the board.
The Opening of a New ASC in Florida Showcases Outpatient Trends
This ASC partnered with Stryker to offer new services and an all-inclusive center under one roof.
The challenge of running a successful ASC starts with the location and facility itself. But it also takes a dedicated team of experts to focus on the myriad of details during the planning stages, and the critical decisions that need to be made. Owners who have a desire to innovate and expand their business will want to choose carefully.
SmartCare Surgical Partners in Palm Harbor, Florida, is an example of the innovation and patient-centric solutions that make a business successful while following the trends in outpatient care. Under the direction of Vladimir Alexander, MD, founding partner of Alexander Orthopaedic Associates and CEO of SmartCare Surgical Partners, this ASC was able to combine new services with high quality patient experience and care.
Alexander Orthopaedic Associates has a stated mission "to provide the most innovative and most patient-focused care to our patients. Providing our patients with comprehensive care means we work with you every step of the way, from diagnosis to treatment to rehabilitation." Customized treatment plans and sophisticated surgical and nonsurgical techniques are coupled with compassionate care to achieve the best possible outcomes.
Founded in 2002 by Vladimir Alexander, M.D., Alexander Orthopaedics is the premier subspecialty orthopedic practice in the region, comprised of seven specialty physicians, seven physician assistants/nurse practitioners and a physical therapy team. The board-certified physicians are sub-specialty trained in multiple areas of orthopaedics including hip, spine, foot and ankle, shoulder, elbow, and hand and wrist surgeries.
The company has formed a new company, SmartCare Surgical Partners, and opened a surgery center in Palm Harbor, Florida. Recently, a video was released to showcase the journey of how this ASC was developed, and the decisions made along the way to create a patient-centric, world-class facility. Dr. Alexander and his COO, Dr. David Penello, developed a state-of-the art multi-specialty center.
Working with Stryker, the company focused on the Palm Harbor location throughout the construction process. As Dr. Penello notes in the video that follows, the partners were looking to elevate their patient experience to the highest standard of care — and partnering with Stryker made that possible. The convenience of working with one company to reach their goals allowed for a comfort level that made the 18-month journey successful. According to the doctors and their administrative leader, the Stryker ASC team exceeded expectations.
Now the Palm Harbor location fulfills Dr. Alexander's goal of being an all-inclusive center with the ability to take care of patients from the very beginning of their surgery journey through recovery and rehabilitation under one roof. That vision is what makes SmartCare Surgical Partners so special.
Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHKYuHDXkPI
Note: For more information about how Stryker can help you build and grow your ASC visit: https://www.stryker.com/us/en/care-settings/asc.html
Big Screens, Robots and Digital Tech Power Renovated Ortho Center
The enhancements not only make it easier to perform surgeries, but also are facilitating improved communication with patients.
Stephen J. O'Connell, MD, a fellowship-trained and board-certified orthopedic surgeon who specializes in surgery of the hand, wrist and shoulder at Eisenhower Desert Orthopedic Center (EDOC) in Rancho Mirage, Calif., used to crane his neck to view an arthroscopy on a small monitor that was not ideally positioned around the sterile field. He squinted to decipher anatomical images on a small screen attached to a C-arm while trying to drill in pins.
Those are no longer issues for Dr. O'Connell after a major renovation at EDOC. Now, in each of the facility's eight 595-square-foot ORs, there are robotic platforms, as well as two 80-inch wall-mounted ultra-high-def video (UHD) monitors and three 36-inch UHD monitors strategically positioned on booms around the surgical table. Now he can easily refer to preoperative and intraoperative images at any point during a procedure because they are routed to the easily viewable, crystal-clear screens around him. "No matter where I'm working on the patient, I can look up directly at a screen," says Dr. O'Connell.
As an added bonus, the videos and images are connected and automatically loaded to the facility's EMR and fluoroscopy system, where they can be easily accessed at any time. After each procedure, in a private room adjacent to the ORs, Dr. O'Connell uses an iPad to immediately access, edit and annotate the case's information, videos and images. He then records and emails a short video message to the patient where he reviews what he did during the surgery with supporting images, goes over post-op instructions, and reminds them to schedule their follow-up appointment.
It's not just a one-way conversation, however. Patients can send him messages through the EMR's portal if they have questions at any time. "It's a fully integrated system for medical records and imaging that can be easily shared with patients and healthcare professionals," he says.
Dr. O'Connell and his partners worked hard to turn their vision for the renovated center into its current reality, with the guiding principle that its wired ORs are now built to keep pace with whatever is next in digital health care. "It's gratifying to know we're set up for many years of future surgical success," he says.
The Center for Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics Constructing New Surgery Center
The Tennessee ASC is slated to open in summer 2023.
The Center for Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics (CSMO) is in the process of building a new ambulatory surgery center (ASC) in its home of Chattanooga, Tenn.
The $18.7 million, 37,500-square-foot facility, set on 4.3 acres and located at the corner of Walker and Tyner Roads in Chattanooga, will feature eight ORs, two procedure rooms, and 40 pre-op and recovery bays. CSMO claims the ASC will offer the most advanced tools and technologies needed for highly specialized orthopedic care upon its expected opening in summer 2023. The new facility will replace its smaller existing ASC and will be large enough to accommodate all 21 of its physicians.
"We are thrilled to break ground on our new surgery center, which we anticipate will be a destination for orthopedics in our region," says Benji Miller, MD, the ASC's medical director. "We made the decision to pursue the new ASC to expand our footprint and be a leader both in our community and across the country for innovative outpatient orthopedic surgical care."
While the ASC will heavily focus on total joint replacements, CSMO will also use the facility to provide spine care, which is a growing focus for the practice. This summer, CSMO fellowship trained surgeon Benjamin Geddes, MD, completed the first successful series of U.S. surgeries for total joint replacement for the lumbar spine at CSMO's current ASC, assisted by Alex Sielatycki, MD, of Steamboat Orthopaedic and Spine Institute of Steamboat Springs, Colo.
"We believe this location will offer state-of-the-art and convenient access to ambulatory surgical care for our entire market," says CSMO CEO Becky Farmer. "Part of our mission is to continue to deliver a more affordable option for safe, high-quality care. The new ASC will provide efficient, cost-effective surgical procedures and interventional pain management with the continued level of excellence that patients have come to expect from CSMO."