How COVID-19 affected Gastro Health — 3 insights from President Dr. James Leavitt

Private equity-backed Gastro Health had to temporarily close several of its affiliated centers in response to COVID-19. 

Here, Miami-based Gastro Health President and Chief Clinical Officer James Leavitt, MD, spoke with NextServices President Praveen Suthrum about COVID-19 and how the healthcare system will change going forward.

Here are three insights from Dr. Leavitt: 

1. Gastro Health had to close surgical centers across its platform and furlough a portion of its staff. The practice has reopened several centers, and Dr. Leavitt said volume is back to around 50-60 percent of what it used to be. 

2. Despite that, Dr. Leavitt said Gastro Health still has an active merger and acquisition pipeline. He said: "We still are talking to a lot of groups, we're signing NDAs and letters of intent, we're doing due diligence [on deals] that were in the pipeline right now. … The closing date … we'll see." 

3. Concerning returning volumes, Dr. Leavitt said practices should aim to get back 70-80 percent of their volume by the end of the year. He predicts COVID-19 will make practices more efficient. 

"I think all of us have learned that there are various more efficiencies that we can do," he said. "You can do more with less. ... Necessity is the mother of invention. How can you return even stronger and better?" 

Read the entire piece on NextServices here.

More articles on surgery centers:
The 'new normal' for ASCs: 16 admins on how the pandemic will change the field forever
Dr. Thomas Vikoren: Same-day TJR 'made all the more important' by COVID-19
Indiana orthopedic practice with surgery center to open

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