Adopting value-driving technologies can help ASCs drive revenue growth

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Surgical patients have become increasingly selective when choosing their ideal treatment environment. Rather than relying on medical referral alone, patients choose ASCs based on personal recommendations, social media, and search engine results.

As digital marketing and word-of-mouth retain their strong influence over patients’ preferences, successful ASCs need to meet their expectations for advanced, technology-assisted procedures. To fulfilling these new consumer trends, ASCs need cost-effective technologies that provide an elevated quality of care.

Demand for Advanced Technologies from ASC Patients

Growing demand for technologically advanced care options has greatly influenced consumer demand among ASC patients. Computer-assisted surgeries (CAS), which include everything from robotic-controlled procedures to smart navigation instruments, offer greater precision, control, and alignment.  This leads to surgical procedures with more consistent and less invasive outcomes, of which patients are highly aware and motivated to seek out. 

Despite these advantages, surgeons often underutilize CAS because many tools are financially and logistically difficult to integrate into their practice. As a result, there is an operational and fiscal need to adopt surgical navigation tools that are user-friendly, cost-effective, and beneficial to patient outcomes.

Consumer Trends in the ASC Market

ASCs that invest in surgical navigation tools and other advanced technologies offer value-added services that acquire patients and generate positive word-of-mouth. Many centers feature these tools to improve outcomes and efficiency, to attract discerning patients, and increase profits.

Patients’ increased interest in CAS coincides with the overall trend towards healthcare consumerism. Like consumers in any other industry, prospective ASC patients comparatively shop between centers to choose a facility offering the best-perceived value, quality, and service rather than relying on a single expert referral.

Although cost is a major motivator for many patients opting for outpatient surgery, savings alone may often not be enough to draw patients to one center over another. Across the industry, outpatient surgery centers already offer significant savings over inpatient procedures. 

Once a patient is committed to seeking outpatient surgery, ASCs that provide technology-assisted surgery have an increased chance of acquiring that patient through direct marketing, word-of-mouth, or referral.

ASCs utilizing advanced technologies to support their surgical procedures differentiate themselves from other options in patients’ minds. To remain competitive in this rapidly growing market, both large and small ASC businesses need to identify cost-effective surgical technologies that fulfill both their medical care standards and patients’ expectations. 

New-build ASCs Invest Heavily in Computer Assisted Surgery

The global ASC market, worth $1.89 billion as of late 2020, is expected to grow rapidly in the next decade. In 2020 alone, hundreds of new ASCs announced their opening. Existing ASCs of all sizes need to position themselves to remain competitive as new investors crowd the market and compete for patient acquisition. 

Investing in surgical technologies can appeal to potential patients, but the initial costs can consume resources that are needed to grow the business in other areas. With certain tools or systems, offering CAS can require an enormous investment up-front with an impractically slow return on investment. 

Instead of investing in expensive robotic systems, ASCs can use smart tools, such as OrthAlign handheld navigation for their total joint replacements, to provide the accuracy of CAS without massive upfront or ongoing maintenance costs. OrthAlign delivers accurate, individualized alignment to any patient with a single, disposable handpiece that can be used across implant platforms and surgical philosophies. The user-friendly design and interface provide streamlined workflows to reduce OR times and support multiple ORs concurrently without the investment, equipment, or pre-operative imaging required by many CAS systems.

Value-driven Computer Assisted Surgery is the Future

Patients are paying attention to trends in surgical technologies. As private-payer reimbursement for ASCs continues to increase, independent centers should consider incorporating value-adding technologies, like OrthAlign, into their offered procedures. 

Few centers can afford to invest heavily in capital equipment that exhaust resources reserved for other business needs. To remain competitive, both large and small ASCs can and should promote their use of surgical technologies. Not only will OrthAlign handheld navigation provide accurate, individualized component placement and help maximize the efficiency of procedures, but it will also position ASCs competitively in a dynamic market.

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