Matthew Meyer, MD, associate professor of anesthesiology at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, spoke with Becker's to answer, "What do current anesthesia employment trends mean for independent ASCs?"
Note: This response has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
Dr. Matthew Meyer: I think [current anesthesia employment trends] could be really good for independent ASCs. I think it's a matter of ASCs putting themselves out there and leaning into what makes an independent ambulatory surgery center special. Anesthesiologists tend to work in large groups, whether it's a nationalized conglomerate or a large healthcare system, and these places are hiring people all the time. Essentially, there's always employment at some of these institutions because they know that they're gonna have churn and they're always hiring people. [Anesthesiologists] are essentially viewed as commodities in a lot of these institutions.
At an independent ASC, you have one to maybe as many as 10 operating rooms — which would be huge — and anesthesiologists are not a commodity; they are an essential part of your system, and you need that anesthesiologist to show up. You need them to be good with the patients, and you have the opportunity to show them how valuable they are in the system. I think, when you might be treated as a commodity at other institutions, it's all the more important for a place that doesn't see you as a commodity and sees you as an incredibly valuable part
of the team to put that into their marketing. What does anyone want out of a job other than to be respected? That at the base is something that people really want. They'll take a pay cut if they feel like they're really important and their opinion is respected.