Archive November 2017 XVIII, No. 11

Need Help Launching Your Total Joints Program?

Leading orthopedic implant companies can assist you in starting a same-day joint replacement program.

Anna Merriman

Anna Merriman, Associate Editor


total joint procedure MAKING A CHANGE Many surgeons are taking their total joint procedures to outpatient settings.

If building a total joints program from the ground up sounds incredibly challenging, well, that's because it is. But the rewards will likely be well worth the blood, sweat and tears you'll shed. Not only are total joints exploding, but increasingly they're being performed in outpatient facilities: a more efficient, a more economical and a more desirable setting for surgeons as well as for patients — who'd much prefer to recover and rehabilitate at home rather than spend 3 nights in a hospital.

The numbers tell the story. About 3 million patients are expected to undergo outpatient hip and knee replacements by 2030. Already, more than 10% of total knee cases and being performed on an outpatient basis — a number expected to grow when Medicare begins paying for hip and knee replacement surgeries that are performed in ambulatory surgical centers, which could happen as early as this month when CMS unveils the final 2018 outpatient payment rule.

If you'd like to capitalize on this opportunity and add total joints to your facility, you don't have to go it alone. Many of the leading orthopedic implant companies offer programs to support your facility through the transition. We talked to 5 of them and distilled how they can help you.

1. Educate your surgeons and staff
Starting the process of implementing outpatient total joints at your facility begins with educating yourself and your staff on the nuts and bolts, but where do you begin? How to choose a good candidate for outpatient surgery — one who has no significant comorbidities like sleep apnea or diabetes — and how to consult with the patient and family before and after the surgery are some basic lessons you need to learn, says William Wilder, director of outpatient marketing for DePuy Synthes.

DePuy's free program, called Outpatient Pathways, "provides the playbook to help surgeons, nurses and ASC administrators," says Mr. Wilder. The program, led by a pioneer faculty, is broken down into 3 chapters: How to Get Started, Operational Checklist and Patient Checklist.

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