The Next 5 Years of Spine and ASCs

Spine

At the 20th Annual Spine, Orthopedic + Pain Management-Driven ASC Conference, an engaging keynote panel was held focusing on the next five years of spine and ambulatory surgery centers.

Scott Becker, JD, Founder of Becker's Healthcare and Partner at McGuire Woods LLC, moderated the panel featuring experts from the field. 

  • Harel Deutsch, MD, Co-Director, Rush Spine Center
  • Richard Wohns, MD, JD, MBA, Founder and Medical Director, NeoSpine
  • John V. Prunskis, MD, FIPP, Medical Director, Principal, DxTx Pain and Spine

The panel discussed the challenges of starting a practice and the excitement surrounding AI, robotics and navigation as enabling technologies in the field.

Key Takeaways:

1: The future of spine practice is becoming more minimally invasive and independent practices are becoming more popular than hospitals employing physicians. However, there is a shortage of spine surgeons in rural areas and a variation in the amount of spine surgeries per state.

2: There is a trend towards performing more surgeries in ASCs due to cost and infection prevention, but hospital CEOs may put up roadblocks. There is also a disconnect between what CMS does and what HHS intends.

3: The shortage of anesthesiologists is a major problem in healthcare, and there is a need for more residents to be trained and more programs to be certified. The residency period for neurosurgery may also need to be differentiated to allow specialists to provide their services more quickly.

4: Starting a practice can be difficult for doctors due to the bureaucratic burden they face, but it is still possible if they are able to manage these burdens. AI, robotics, and navigation are all enabling technologies that panel members are excited about.

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