ASCs are a 'relief valve' for hospitals, ortho clinic CEO says 

ASCs can offer relief to overrun hospitals through the migration of nonurgent procedures, according to Michael Boblitz, CEO of Tallahassee (Fla.) Orthopedic Clinic. 

Mr. Boblitz joined Becker's to discuss where ASCs stand in the healthcare industry and which ASCs will win in their market. 

Editor's note: This interview was edited lightly for length and clarity. 

Question: Where do ASCs stand in the consumer-driven healthcare era?

MIchael Boblitz: 1.To serve as a relief valve for the growing acuity of hospitals that are constantly challenged with balancing the top priority of the emergent, complex patient with the second priority of the scheduled, elective patient.

2. To play a lead role in the rapidly increasing cost of healthcare. The national data is pretty consistent that a procedure performed in an ASC rather than a hospital reduces the employer's cost by more than 30 percent, and that is so important during these crazy times with inflation running so hot.

Q: Which ASCs will win in their market?

MB: 1. Strong, highly reputable orthopedic and spine practices that hold a dominant market share in their region of service. Small, fragmented groups do not have the strength to survive and continually grow cases at an ASC. A famous and now retired dean and CEO of one of the top health systems in the world once told me the hospital (or a surgical center) is nothing but a stage. It's his job and the job of any CEO to recruit the best doctors in the world to work from that stage.

2. Tight alignment with what I consider to be critical strategic partners that include the region's largest primary care groups, as well as the leading hospital(s) in the area that embrace collaboration (rather than competition).

3. A facility conducive to successfully caring for spine and joint replacement patients, such as Ritz Carlton-like extended recovery suites and a comprehensive robotics portfolio that includes, but is not limited to, an O-Arm spine navigation system, Mako and Rosa.

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