Dr. Raj Bhole's goals for an orthopedic MSO merger

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Addressing the stigma of private equity partnerships is a challenge top of mind for Raj Bhole, MD, chair of Resurgens Orthopedics and board member of United Musculoskeletal Partners. 

UMP merged with another management services organization, Novum Orthopedic Partners, in July. UMP formed in December after gaining investment from New York City-based private equity firm Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe.

Dr. Bhole discussed the advantages, challenges and goals for the growing MSO.

Note: Responses were edited for clarity.

Question: What are the advantages and challenges you're anticipating in this merger?

Dr. Raj Bhole: So when you look at the advantages, I would break it down into a couple main areas. One is the exchange of best practices in both clinical practices and the business operations and really understanding what works and what does not work. Second is access to capital, expertise and leadership talent to execute on our vision of building a best-in-class orthopedic enterprise. 

I think the biggest challenge has been overcoming the stigma around partnering with private equity, which is why it's important for us to meet with other physician groups and share UMP's physician lead model, and how we can be stronger together. The way I see it, private equity firms are like any business in that the caliber is variable. This is why we were very thoughtful in choosing private equity partners whose goals and values aligned with ours.

Q: What are your top goals for this partnership and merger?

RB: Resurgens set out with the goal of creating one of the leading musculoskeletal organizations in the country. To do so, we needed to partner with leading private equity firms, hire talented leaders, and develop best in class capabilities to provide value creation back to the physicians while allowing the providers to focus on what they do best: take care of patients. Another important strategic goal is increasing our quality standards and outcomes reporting to position UMP to be a leader in value based care.

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