How Much is that Implant in My Patient?


Would you be willing to bet your orthopedic surgeons know how much the implants they use cost your facility? According to recently published research, you would be better off putting your money on red or black at the roulette wheel. A study of surgeons at several academic medical centers found only about 20% of orthopedic surgeons could correctly identify the price within 20% of the true price to the facility. While there are a number of factors that potentially make this study unique - academic medical centers, small study group, etc. - I am willing to bet you are not shocked by this finding. I would also be willing to bet this lack of awareness of cost extends beyond implants and may in fact be worse with respect to other supplies used in procedures.

The silver lining in the study is a significant majority of surgeons felt cost should be a consideration in their selection of implants. The even better news is that this knowledge gap can be closed and you can tap into the intention of surgeons to participate in cost reduction efforts. Our work with surgeons bears this out - nearly all indicate they are willing, if not eager, to understand better the costs of their cases and participate in creating as much value as possible. 

For more information, you might spend a few minutes reviewing the study and the coverage of it at Modern Healthcare and Kaiser Health News and at least one discussion on LinkedIn.