Orthopedics is the solution to ASC survival, CEO says

John Ryan, CEO of OrthoIndy in Indianapolis, joined Becker's to discuss what solutions he sees to the biggest challenges facing ASCs today.

Question: What are the solutions to the biggest challenges you're seeing for ASCs today?

John Ryan: Among several challenges for ASCs, I think the three most significant are procedure volume, payer contracting and case mix. Any one of these three challenges can mean the difference between an ASC that is successful and one that fails. I am no doubt biased, but orthopedics is a single solution to address all three of these challenges. Regarding procedure volume, predictive modeling in demographics points to a population boom of those seeking orthopedic care, so we know that orthopedic procedures will be a meaningful source of ASC case volume growth in the future. We also know that more and more orthopedic procedures are migrating into the outpatient setting from the inpatient setting, providing yet another source of growth in ASC procedure volume opportunity. Regarding payer contracting and case mix, a few thoughts come to mind. 

First, reimbursement for orthopedic cases could always be better, but as reimbursement goes, it is better than several other specialties, making it an attractive specialty to offer at an ASC. Related, I am likely stating the obvious when I say that ASCs with meaningful orthopedic volume stand a much better chance of financial viability and sustainability than those [without]. While it is absolutely possible for an ASC to be financially successful without orthopedics, those ASCs with orthopedic procedure volume at or above 25 percent have a far clearer path to navigate the other economic pressures on an ASC's financial health.

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