Use of Physical Therapy Following Total Knee Replacement Surgery: Implications of Orthopedic Surgeons' Ownership of Physical Therapy Services.
ABSTRACT: To examine whether the course of physical therapy treatments received by patients who undergo total knee replacement (TKR) surgery differs depending on whether the orthopedic surgeon has a financial stake in physical therapy services.Sample of Medicare beneficiaries who underwent TKR surgery during the years 2007-2009.We used regression analysis to evaluate the effect of physician self-referral on the following outcomes: (1) time from discharge to first physical therapy visit; (2) episode length; (3) number of physical therapy visits per episode; (4) number of physical therapy service units per episode; and (5) number of physical therapy services per episode expressed in relative value units.TKR patients who underwent physical therapy treatment at a physician-owned clinic received on average twice as many physical therapy visits (8.3 more) than patients whose TKR surgery was performed by a orthopedic surgeon who did not self-refer physical therapy services (p < .001). Regression-adjusted results show that TKR patients treated at physician-owned clinics received almost nine fewer physical therapy service units during an episode compared with patients treated by nonself-referring providers (p < .001). In relative value units, this difference was 4 (p < .001). In contrast, episodes where the orthopedic surgeon owner does not profit from physical therapy services rendered to the patient look virtually identical to episodes where the TKR surgery was performed by a surgeon nonowner.Physical therapists not involved with physician-owned clinics saw patients for fewer visits, but the composition of physical therapy services rendered during each visit included more individualized therapeutic exercises.
Project description:Despite potential concerns regarding their validity, physician-rating websites continue to grow in number and utilization and feature prominently on major search engines, potentially affecting patient decision-making regarding physician selection.We sought to determine whether patient ratings on public physician-rating websites correlate with surgeon-specific outcomes for high-volume total knee replacement (TKR) surgeons in New York State (NYS) from 2010 to 2012.Online patient ratings were compared to surgeon-specific outcomes from the Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System (SPARCS) database from the NYS Department of Health. For each surgeon, we determined the infection rate, re-admission rate, and revision surgery rate within the study period, as well as the mean inpatient length of stay, for TKR from the SPARCS database. Online ratings were collected from two physician-rating websites (Vitals.com and HealthGrades.com).One hundred seventy-four high-volume TKR surgeons were identified in NYS from 2010 to 2012. The mean rates of in-hospital infection, 90-day infection, 30-day re-admission, 90-day re-admission, and revision surgery were 0.25, 1.00, 4.89, 8.43, and 1.31%, respectively. The mean number of ratings for individual surgeons on HealthGrades.com and Vitals.com were 24.0 (range: 0 to 109) and 19.3 (range: 0 to 114), respectively, and mean overall ratings were 4.2 and 4.1 (out of 5) stars, respectively. As with online patient ratings of individual surgeons, variability was observed in the total adverse event rate distribution for individual surgeons. Despite sufficient variability in both online patient rating and surgeon-specific outcomes for high-volume TKR surgeons in NYS, no correlation was observed.There was no correlation between surgeon-specific TKR outcome measures and online patient ratings. We therefore advise that patients exert caution when interpreting ratings on these websites.
Project description:Backgroud:Physician-rating websites (PRWs) are designed to publicly report physician quality information while bringing forth a sense of transparency. This study looks to identify the influence PRWs have on a patient's choice of orthopedic hand surgeon while stratifying patient physician preference by various demographic characteristics. Methods:This survey-based study was conducted in a suburban outpatient orthopedic hand practice. All patients between 18 to 89 years of age who presented for an appointment were asked to participate. Survey questions aimed to identify patient demographics and the sources patients used to choose their hand surgeon. Results:Overall, 104 patients completed our survey. Our study population was predominantly between 51 and 70 years of age (50.0%), women (60.6%), and Caucasian (84.6%), received a general education degree or high school diploma (36.5%), was employed (49.0%), and owned private health insurance (59.6%). One hundred and two patients (98.1%) answered that their physician's reputation is important. Seventy-five patients (72.1%) reported that they heard about their surgeon by physician referral, while only two (1.9%) used online search engines. Sixty-six patients (63.5%) noted that physician referrals were most trustworthy. Only 10 patients (9.6%) consulted PRWs to choose their surgeon, most of whom were younger than 50 years (n = 6), Caucasian (n = 8), and employed (n = 7) and had schooling after high school (n = 8). Conclusions:Despite increases in digital information exchange platforms, PRWs are not commonly used by suburban orthopedic hand patients to exchange information about or choose their hand surgeon. Patients still primarily rely on physician referrals and word of mouth from family and friends to choose their surgeon.
Project description:OBJECTIVE: To compare the costs of physician-owned cardiac, orthopedic, and surgical single specialty hospitals with those of full-service hospital competitors. DATA SOURCES: The primary data sources are the Medicare Cost Reports for 1998-2004 and hospital inpatient discharge data for three of the states where single specialty hospitals are most prevalent, Texas, California, and Arizona. The latter were obtained from the Texas Department of State Health Services, the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project. Additional data comes from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey Database. STUDY DESIGN: We identified all physician-owned cardiac, orthopedic, and surgical specialty hospitals in these three states as well as all full-service acute care hospitals serving the same market areas, defined using Dartmouth Hospital Referral Regions. We estimated a hospital cost function using stochastic frontier regression analysis, and generated hospital specific inefficiency measures. Application of t-tests of significance compared the inefficiency measures of specialty hospitals with those of full-service hospitals to make general comparisons between these classes of hospitals. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Results do not provide evidence that specialty hospitals are more efficient than the full-service hospitals with whom they compete. In particular, orthopedic and surgical specialty hospitals appear to have significantly higher levels of cost inefficiency. Cardiac hospitals, however, do not appear to be different from competitors in this respect. CONCLUSIONS: Policymakers should not embrace the assumption that physician-owned specialty hospitals produce patient care more efficiently than their full-service hospital competitors.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Although total knee replacement (TKR) surgery is highly prevalent and generally successful, functional outcomes post-TKR vary widely. Most patients receive some physical therapy (PT) following TKR, but PT practice is variable and associations between specific content and dose of PT interventions and functional outcomes are unknown. Research has identified exercise interventions associated with better outcomes but studies have not assessed whether such evidence has been translated into clinical practice. We characterized the content, dose, and progression of usual post-acute PT services following TKR, and examined associations of specific details of post-acute PT with patients' 6-month functional outcomes. METHODS:Post-acute PT data were collected from patients who were undergoing primary unilateral TKR and participating in a clinical trial of a phone-based coaching intervention. PT records from the terminal episode of care were reviewed and utilization and exercise content data were extracted. Descriptive statistics and linear regression models characterized PT treatment factors and identified associations with 6-month outcomes. RESULTS:We analyzed 112 records from 30 PT sites. Content and dose of specific exercises and incidence of progression varied widely. Open chain exercises were utilized more frequently than closed chain (median 21 [interquartile range (IQR) 4-49] versus median 13 [IQR 4-28.5]). Median (IQR) occurrence of progression of closed and open chain exercise was 0 (0-2) and 1 (0-3), respectively. Shorter timed stair climb was associated with greater total number of PT interventions and use and progression of closed chain exercises. DISCUSSION:Data suggest that evidence-based interventions are underutilized and dose may be insufficient to obtain optimal outcomes.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:General practitioners (GPs) are often the first health professionals to assess patients with osteoarthritis (OA). Despite clinical guideline recommendations for non-surgical intervention as first-line therapies, the most frequent referral from a GP for a person with knee OA is to an orthopaedic surgeon. The aim of our study was to explore patient factors that impact on the decision to progress to total knee replacement (TKR), including the experience of patients in general practice, their perceptions of their condition, and their access and use of community-based allied health interventions. DESIGN:Qualitative investigation using semi-structured interviews. The Candidacy framework was selected as a lens to examine the factors driving healthcare access. Data were analysed using a thematic analysis approach. Codes identified in the data were mapped to the seven Candidacy domains. Themes corresponding to each domain were described. SETTING:A public hospital in Melbourne, Australia. PARTICIPANTS:27 patients with knee OA who were on a waiting list to undergo TKR. RESULTS:Ten themes described factors influencing access and use of non-surgical interventions and decision-making for undergoing TKR: (1) History of knee problems, change in symptoms; (2) Physical and psychosocial functioning (Identification of Candidacy); (3) GP and social networks as information sources, access to care (Navigation); (4) Referral pathways (Permeability of services); (5) Communication of impact (Appearances at health services); (6) GP-Surgeon as the predominant referral pathway (Adjudications); (7) Physical activity as painful; (8) Beliefs about effectiveness of non-surgical interventions (Offers and resistance); (9) Familiarity with local system; and (10) Availability (Operating conditions and local production of Candidacy). CONCLUSIONS:Using the Candidacy framework to analyse patients' experiences when deciding to progress to TKR highlighted missed opportunities in general practice to orient patients to first try non-surgical interventions. Patients with knee OA also require improved support to navigate allied health services.
Project description:Importance:Black patients with advanced osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee are significantly less likely than white patients to undergo surgery. No strategies have been proved to improve access to surgery for black patients with end-stage OA of the knee. Objective:To assess whether a decision aid improves access to total knee replacement (TKR) surgery for black patients with OA of the knee. Design, Setting, and Participants:In a randomized clinical trial, 336 eligible participants who self-identified as black and 50 years or older with chronic and frequent knee pain, a Western Ontario McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index score of at least 39, and radiographic evidence of OA of the knee were recruited from December 1, 2010, to May 31, 2014, at 3 medical centers. Exclusion criteria were history of major joint replacement, terminal illness, inflammatory arthritis, prosthetic leg, cognitive impairment, lack of a telephone, or contraindications to elective replacement surgery. Data were analyzed on a per-protocol and intention-to-treat (ITT) basis. Exposure:Access to a decision aid for OA of the knee, a 40-minute video that describes the risks and benefits of TKR surgery. Main Outcomes and Measures:Receipt of TKR surgery within 12 months and/or a recommendation for TKR surgery from an orthopedic surgeon within 6 months after the intervention. Results:Among 336 patients (101 men [30.1%]; 235 women [69.9%]; mean [SD] age, 59.1 [7.2] years) randomized to the intervention or control group, 13 of 168 controls (7.7%) and 25 of 168 intervention patients (14.9%) underwent TKR within 12 months (P?=?.04). These changes represent a 70% increase in the TKR rate, which increased by 86% (11 of 154 [7.1%] vs 23 of 150 [15.3%]; P?=?.02) in the per-protocol sample. Twenty-six controls (15.5%) and 34 intervention patients (20.2%) in the ITT analysis received a recommendation for surgery within 6 months (P?=?.25). The difference in the surgery recommendation rate between the controls (24 of 154 [15.6%]) and the intervention group (31 of 150 [20.7%]) in the per-protocol analysis also was not statistically significant (P?=?.25). Adjustment for study site yielded similar results: for receipt of TKR at 12 months, adjusted ORs were 2.10 (95% CI, 1.04-4.27) for the ITT analysis and 2.39 (95% CI, 1.12-5.10) for the per-protocol analysis; for recommendation of TKR at 6 months, 1.39 (95% CI, 0.79-2.44) and 1.41 (95% CI, 0.78-2.55). Conclusions and Relevance:A decision aid increased rates of TKR among black patients. However, rates of recommendation for surgery did not differ significantly. A patient-centered counseling and educational intervention may help to address racial variations in the use of TKR for the management of end-stage OA of the knee. Trial Registration:clinicaltrials.gov Identifer: NCT01851785.
Project description:When World War II ended in 1945, the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS), the oldest orthopedic hospital in the country, was entering its eighth decade. Only 5 years previously, its name was changed from the Hospital for the Ruptured and Crippled (R & C). In 1934, Dr. Philip D. Wilson (1886-1969) had been recruited to fill the office of the fifth Surgeon-in-Chief with a key charge to restore the hospital as the leading orthopedic institution in our country, a role it originally held for over half a century since its founding in 1863. Wilson believed that a close affiliation with a university center having a medical school and hospital, while maintaining independence, was vital to achieve this objective. In 1948, negotiations between representatives of the Board of the New York Society for the Relief of the Ruptured and Crippled and representatives of the Society of the New York Hospital and Cornell Medical Center began and a preliminary written agreement was reached in March, the next year. The affiliation called for construction of a new building to house approximately 170 inpatient beds for orthopedics and arthritis. The land on the East River between 70th and 71st Streets, owned by New York Hospital, was to be given, without monetary exchange, to the Hospital for Special Surgery for construction of its new hospital. Finally, on November 1, 1951, a new non-proximate agreement was ratified. On May 25, 1955, after 43 years at 321 East 42nd Street, the Hospital for Special Surgery moved to its new six million dollar building at 535 East 70th Street where it formally became affiliated with New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center. Two months later, on July 1, 1955, Philip D. Wilson retired as Surgeon-in-Chief to become the Hospital for Special Surgery's new Director of Research and Surgeon-in-Chief Emeritus.
Project description:Total knee replacement (TKR) surgeries have increased in recent years. Exercise programs and other interventions following surgery can facilitate the recovery process. With limited clinician contact time, patients with TKR have a substantial burden of self-management and limited communication with their care team, thus often fail to implement an effective rehabilitation plan.We have developed a digital orthopedic rehabilitation platform that comprises a mobile phone app, wearable activity tracker, and clinical Web portal in order to engage patients with self-management tasks for surgical preparation and recovery, thus addressing the challenges of adherence to and completion of TKR rehabilitation. The study will determine the efficacy of the TKR platform in delivering information and assistance to patients in their preparation and recovery from TKR surgery and a Web portal for clinician care teams (ie, surgeons and physiotherapists) to remotely support and monitor patient progress.The study will evaluate the TKR platform through a randomized controlled trial conducted at multiple sites (N=5) in a number of states in Australia with 320 patients undergoing TKR surgery; the trial will run for 13 months for each patient. Participants will be randomized to either a control group or an intervention group, both receiving usual care as provided by their hospital. The intervention group will receive the app and wearable activity tracker. Participants will be assessed at 4 different time points: 4 weeks before surgery, immediately before surgery, 12 weeks after surgery, and 52 weeks after surgery. The primary outcome measure is the Oxford Knee Score. Secondary outcome measures include quality of life (Short-Form Health Survey); depression, anxiety, and stress (Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scales); self-motivation; self-determination; self-efficacy; and the level of satisfaction with the knee surgery and care delivery. The study will also collect quantitative usage data related to all components (app, activity tracker, and Web portal) of the TKR platform and qualitative data on the perceptions of the platform as a tool for patients, carers, and clinicians. Finally, an economic evaluation of the impact of the platform will be conducted.Development of the TKR platform has been completed and deployed for trial. The research protocol is approved by 2 human research ethics committees in Australia. A total of 5 hospitals in Australia (2 in New South Wales, 2 in Queensland, and 1 in South Australia) are expected to participate in the trial.The TKR platform is designed to provide flexibility in care delivery and increased engagement with rehabilitation services. This trial will investigate the clinical and behavioral efficacy of the app and impact of the TKR platform in terms of service satisfaction, acceptance, and economic benefits of the provision of digital services.Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR) ACTRN12616000504415; https://www.anzctr.org.au/Trial/Registration/TrialReview.aspx?id=370536 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6oKES0Gp1).
Project description:BACKGROUND:Nearly 1.5 million clinicians in the United States will be affected by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS) new payment program, the Merit-based Incentive Program (MIPS), where clinicians will be penalized or rewarded based on the health care expenditures of their patients. We therefore examined expenditures for major cancer surgery to understand physician-specific variation in episode payments. METHODS:We used Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results-Medicare data to identify patients aged 66-99 y who underwent a prostatectomy, nephrectomy, lung, or colorectal resection for cancer from 2008 to 2012. We calculated 90-d episode payments, attributed each episode to a physician, and evaluated physician-level payment variation. Next, we determined which component (index admission, readmission, physician services, postacute care, hospice) drove differences in payments. Finally, we evaluated payments by geographic region, number of comorbidities, and cancer stage. RESULTS:We identified 39,109 patients who underwent surgery by 1 of 7182 providers. There was wide variation in payments for each procedure (prostatectomy: $7046-$40,687; nephrectomy: $8855-$82,489; lung resection: $11,167-$223,467; colorectal resection: $9711-$199,480). The largest component difference in episode payments varied by condition: physician payments for prostatectomy (29%), postacute care for nephrectomy (38%) and colorectal resections (38%), and index hospital admission for lung resections (43%) but were fairly stable across region, comorbidity number, and cancer stage. CONCLUSIONS:For patients undergoing major cancer surgery, 90-d episode payments vary widely across surgeons. The components driving such variation differ by condition but remain stable across region, number of comorbidities, and cancer stage. These data suggest that programs to reduce specific component payments may have advantages over those targeting individual physicians for decreasing health care expenditures.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>There is little scientific evidence to support the usual practice of providing outpatient rehabilitation to patients undergoing total knee replacement surgery (TKR) immediately after discharge from the orthopaedic ward. It is hypothesised that the lack of clinical benefit is due to the low exercise intensity tolerated at this time, with patients still recovering from the effects of major orthopaedic surgery. The aim of the proposed clinical trial is to investigate the clinical and cost effectiveness of a novel rehabilitation strategy, consisting of an initial home exercise programme followed, approximately six weeks later, by higher intensity outpatient exercise classes.<h4>Methods/design</h4>In this multicentre randomised controlled trial, 600 patients undergoing primary TKR will be recruited at the orthopaedic pre-admission clinic of 10 large public and private hospitals in Australia. There will be no change to the medical or rehabilitative care usually provided while the participant is admitted to the orthopaedic ward. After TKR, but prior to discharge from the orthopaedic ward, participants will be randomised to either the novel rehabilitation strategy or usual rehabilitative care as provided by the hospital or recommended by the orthopaedic surgeon. Outcomes assessments will be conducted at baseline (pre-admission clinic) and at 6 weeks, 6 months and 12 months following randomisation. The primary outcomes will be self-reported knee pain and physical function. Secondary outcomes include quality of life and objective measures of physical performance. Health economic data (health sector and community service utilisation, loss of productivity) will be recorded prospectively by participants in a patient diary. This patient cohort will also be followed-up annually for five years for knee pain, physical function and the need or actual incidence of further joint replacement surgery.<h4>Discussion</h4>The results of this pragmatic clinical trial can be directly implemented into clinical practice. If beneficial, the novel rehabilitation strategy of utilising outpatient exercise classes during a later rehabilitation phase would provide a feasible and potentially cost-effective intervention to optimise the physical well-being of the large number of people undergoing TKR.<h4>Trial registration</h4>ACTRN12609000054213.