Will ASC joint replacements alter the role of implant representatives?

The healthcare delivery system in the United States is considered the most expensive in the world, and the future need for joint replacements is sure to worsen the economic pressures. Same-day surgery for hip and knee replacements has been shown to be safe and effective — when done in the setting of a comprehensive approach to patient engagement, modern pain management, vetted pathway selection methods and cloud-based systems for homecare and patient reported outcomes. Accordingly, there is a growing interest among patients and payers alike in transitioning joint replacement to the more cost-effective, ambulatory settings.

Dr. Vinod Dasa is an associate professor at Louisiana State University in New Orleans who recently joined the growing number of joint replacement specialists utilizing the SwiftPath Program. He was one of the speakers at a SwiftPath Symposium in San Diego where he addressed the topic of joint replacement surgery without implant representatives in the room. His team recently published an IRB-approved series of 292 patients who underwent TKA at a university-based orthopedic practice from 2011-15. The patients were stratified into two groups: outpatient (LOS ≤ 1 day) and inpatient (LOS two to four days).

The outpatient group had higher WOMAC and Oxford scores compared to the inpatient group. They also had fewer complications. The authors concluded that patients staying in the hospital for less time, spending less money and decreasing exposure to nosocomial infections, results in similar if not statistically significant better outcomes measured by WOMAC pain, function, and stiffness and Oxford knee score.

According to Dr. Dasa, their research supports that same day total joint replacements are equally as effective and possibly even more effective than the traditional inpatient model. “The SwiftPath Program is the only solution I’ve seen to effectively scale this across the country. Our research supports what the SwiftPath Program wants to achieve and patients will benefit as a result,” said Dr. Dasa.

By  Laura Dyrda | Becker’s Spine Review

Image Credit: SwiftPath

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