5 Tips for Developing a Spine Center of Excellence

At the 10th Annual Orthopedic, Spine and Pain Management-Driven ASC Conference in Chicago on June 15, Bob Reznik, MBA, president of Prizm Development, discussed how to develop a spine center of excellence in a post-reform era.

Mr. Reznik began his presentation by focusing on how developers of spine centers need to be geared for the future and healthcare changes, rather than for the past, especially in a post-reform era. He then gave five tips for developing an excellent spine center:

1. Create a positive first impression. According to Mr. Reznik, the first impression a patient receives from a spine center is important to their overall satisfaction. Showing the patient where their treatment will end — physical therapy and rehab — gives them a more positive impression of their spine care. "You want the back pain sufferer to say that this spine center is unlike any other. Most clinics hide physical therapy in the back or in the basement of the spine center. [Prizm Development] puts the rehab area up front and center so it is the first thing the patient sees when they walk through the door," said Mr. Reznik.

2. Focus on return to activity, movement and fitness. "Remember that a spine center is selling a return to activity, movement and fitness. You do not want to show spine surgery as the product. You want to show the patient that they will return to activity — they will return to running, golfing or whatever they enjoy," said Mr. Reznik. This point ties in with putting the rehab and physical therapy in plain view. When a patient sees physical therapy, they are reminded of the ultimate goal to return to pain-free movement.

3. Prepare the spine center for multi-disciplinary approach.
According to Mr. Reznik, spine centers can be improved if they prepare for a multi-disciplinary approach. "There is a new and better way to provide spine care the removes bias and provides a multi-disciplinary approach to spine care," he said. Prizm Development bases its spine center model on hundreds of interviews with physicians, payors and patients as well as results from patient satisfaction surveys. "The approach is based on specialist approaches to spine care as well. Our goal is to meet the needs of all those who have a stake in the successful treatment of spine and back problems," said Mr. Reznik.

4. Move away from the surgical-mill mentality, consider less square footage.
One of the biggest movements across the country is away from unnecessary spine surgeries. For this reason, a spine center does not need as much square footage for operating rooms. "The days of 'surgical mills' are over. Payors and medical directors are trying to eliminate unnecessary spine surgeries," said Mr. Reznik. "I have found that large 25,000-square-foot spine centers are not as successful as smaller spine centers of 15,000 to 20,000 square feet," he continued.  

5. Buy the building. With interest rates the way they are, Mr. Reznik believes it is a good time to buy the building for a spine center. Owning the building will give the owners more control over developing the spine center and its layout. "The only X factor is the uncertainty of healthcare reform outcomes," he said.

More Articles on Spine Driven ASCs:

How to Assess the Profitability of Orthopedic and Spine Cases
Key Business and Clinical Issues With Moving Spine Procedures to ASCs
5 Best Clinical Practices, Business Strategies for Spine-Driven Centers

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