3 potential hot spots for spine care, practice growth


Florida, Colorado and Mexico are all areas where three experts and leaders believe spine care will accelerate and practices will gravitate to.

Florida has been a prime target for practice expansion and growth in the last year. Donnie Romine, CEO of Jacksonville, Fla.-based Southeast Orthopedic Specialists, said he expects consolidation will continue in the state.

"With the overall growth of Florida, coupled with the aging of the population, new market entrants are not unexpected," Mr. Romine said. "I think the key to the success of any organization in this space will be their willingness to think differently, shed the ideas and models of the past and embrace a willingness to bring all stakeholders to the table. We have seen in Florida that payers and health systems are focusing on those organizations with an integrated platform that can effectively drive outcomes and value in sustainable ways across markets, especially as greater patient choice and consumerism are playing a key role."

Ernest Braxton, MD, of Vail (Colo.) Summit Orthopaedics and Neurosurgery, said he's seeing more people interested in moving to Colorado, and with that comes practice growth opportunities.

"We're steadily growing our practice at VSON, mostly in Colorado ski towns," he told Becker's. "What we're seeing is a great migration of folks from urban areas to our mountain communities. As a result, we are having some more pressure on our school system and increased housing prices. But there's also a demand for healthcare, from patients newly arrived from urban areas. We get a lot of folks from cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, all buying properties and moving. People are either buying a second home, or permanently moving up here as our workforce becomes more remote. So we're trying to keep up with that population growth and offer high quality of care for these new people in our community." 

Outside the U.S., Tijuana, Mexico, is one city where Dr. Alfonso Garcia anticipates growth in spine care.

"Endoscopic spine procedures are being done widely at ASCs, and Mexico is not an exception," Dr. Garcia said on the "Becker's Healthcare Spine and Orthopedic Podcast." 

"We are gifted to be at a very special location geographically speaking, and we understand the language and are internationally recognized as a reference center for minimally invasive and endoscopic spine procedures. There's definitely a lot of work to do and to keep moving forward. I expect that very soon Tijuana will be a flagship representing top-of-the-line hospitals and ASCs, becoming a very attractive destination for spine care."

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