Private equity trends 4 surgeons are watching

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Private equity is a huge influence in many sectors of the healthcare industry, and orthopedics are no exception.

These four orthopedic surgeons recently connected with Becker's to share the big trends in orthopedics and healthcare that they are currently keeping an eye on.

Note: Responses were lightly edited for clarity and length.

Question: What orthopedic and/or broader healthcare trends are you currently following?

John Houde, MD. Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital (Lebanon, N.H.): I am currently on the AAOS Health Care Systems Committee. We are studying and trying to educate our members on how to work with CMS on value based healthcare delivery and an episode-based payment model. Other trends that are very important are diversity, equity and inclusion in orthopedics. I am also personally very troubled with the advent of private equity buying practices. I do not think that it will be sustainable nor beneficial for patients or surgeons when all is said and done.

Emeka Nwodim, MD. Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics (Bethesda, Md.): The healthcare trend most intriguing to me right now is the percentage of physicians going into employed or private equity-owned positions. On face value, this makes sense due to the significant demand placed on those in private practice. However, I am not sure that the employed model offers a true barrier to the stressors that plague physicians all across healthcare. I am interested to see how long this trend lasts and how private practice entities will respond.

Brett Owens, MD. University Orthopedics (East Providence, R.I.): In our region we are following the significant challenges facing private equity-owned hospitals, the impact on patients' surgical care and orthopedic practices, and the potential impact of hospital closures on remaining hospitals and systems.

David Sugar, MD. Sugar Orthopaedics (Sarasota, Fla.): The trends I am following are the acquisition of medical practices by private equity and the trend of physicians being employed versus private practice.

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