Where 4 major ASC companies are focused for 2022

United Surgical Partners International, AmSurg, SCA Health and Surgery Partners have made significant changes in the last year and are looking to new strategies in the future.

Here is a brief overview of the key areas of focus for each company and where trends in the ASC industry are headed.

AmSurg: 

Nashville, Tenn.-based AmSurg is one of the largest ASC chains in the U.S. with more than 250 surgery centers and 2,000 physicians in 34 states. AmSurg focuses primarily on gastroenterology, ophthalmology and orthopedics cases. Its ASCs performed more than 900,000 colonoscopies, 180,000 cataract surgeries and 95,000 orthopedic surgeries in 2021. 

Last year, AmSurg brought in about half of the earnings for parent company Envision Healthcare. In May, Envision moved about 80 percent of AmSurg to a new corporate subsidiary amid a lender dispute. 

"With patients returning in 2021 and making up for missed appointments, we were busier than ever and tasked with keeping up with the demand for care," CEO Jeff Snodgrass said in Envision's "2021 Impact Report."

USPI:

Dallas-based United Surgical Partners International made $738 million in revenue in the first quarter, and now has more than 11,000 physicians, 432 ASCs and 25 surgical hospitals in its network, the most of any ASC chain. 

The company became the biggest ASC chain by far in December when it closed on a deal to acquire Towson, Md.-based SurgCenter Development.

SurgCenter Development, an ASC chain focused on orthopedic and spine centers across the East Coast and Midwest, added 86 ASCs to USPI's portfolio and will make an immediate impact on the company's bottom line. USPI already had ASCs and partnerships dotting the West Coast and Southern U.S., and with the acquisition, further solidifies its role as a national chain.

The company also has a comprehensive growth plan of a mix between acquisitions and organic growth in the next few years to have more than 600 surgery centers by 2025, including plans to develop 32 ASCs with physicians.

Surgery Partners:

Brentwood, Tenn.-based Surgery Partners spent $325 million in transactions last year and deployed $34 million in acquisitions during the first two months of 2022. By the end of the year, the company plans to spend $200 million on new centers. By comparison, USPI spent $1.2 billion on SurgCenter Development.

Eric Evans, CEO of Surgery Partners, emphasized acquisitions as well as partnerships as being core to the company's growth strategy during an earnings call at the end of February. Surgery Partners also inked a deal this year with Privia Health, a Montana-based physician clinic technology company. Surgery Partners expects the deal to represent long-term value to the company and act as a springboard for other partnerships.

On May 3, the company announced a deal with ValueHealth to expand access to high-value surgical care. The partnership aims to build ASCs and deploy ValueHealth's value-based surgical programs at Surgery Partners' current locations and those in development.

Surgery Partners' growth in orthopedics is expected to merge with ValueHealth's musculoskeletal-focused programming to create a comprehensive suite of orthopedic services. The partnership will also try to capitalize on cardiology's migration to outpatient settings.

SCA Health:

Deerfield, Ill.-based SCA Health, formerly Surgical Care Affiliates, has more than 260 ASCs in its portfolio. The company rebranded to SCA Health in May to represent its growth beyond ASCs. 

"Our new brand represents the evolution of our business — all that we are today and all that we will become. It also represents our growth into many aspects of specialty care as we support physician specialists, care for more patients and welcome new partners into our family of businesses," states the company's website.

SCA Health also helps employers and employees navigate healthcare coverage decisions through Surgical Management Solutions, a platform connecting users with local surgeons and facilities where they can save up to 50 percent on the cost of care. SCA Health acquired Global 1, a value-based care platform that serves as a convener for the company's bundled payment contracts, early last year.

The company is owned and operated by healthcare giant Optum, which has made three multimillion dollar deals in 2022. Since Jan. 1, Optum has acquired 30-location independent physician organization Atrius Health, home healthcare business LHC Group and Refresh Mental Health. 

Optum's revenue jumped nearly 19 percent in the first quarter, to $43.3 billion. Optum Health, which includes more than 53,000 physicians and SCA, said revenue per customer served was up 33 percent year over year in the first quarter as it added more members to its value-based care arrangements.

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