Ask Spine Surgeons is a weekly series of questions posed to spine surgeons around the country about clinical, business and policy issues affecting spine care. We invite all spine surgeon and specialist responses. Next week's question: What new technology for your practice are you most excited about?
Please send responses to Laura Miller at
by Wednesday, September 26, at 5pm CST.
Dennis Crandall, MD, Founder and Medical Director of Sonoran Spine Center, Mesa, Ariz.: We hire talented people and treat them well, so turnover is less a problem. Overtime is scrutinized. We shop our health insurance carrier annually.
Brian R. Gantwerker, MD, Spine Surgeon, The Craniospinal Center of Los Angeles: I invest slowly and carefully. Do not be penny-wise and pound foolish. In other words, when doing things like negotiating a lease, it is cost-effective to get an attorney to look at the lease to avoid costly failure problems.
Invest in quality computer equipment. I use Apple products exclusively due to their robust hardware quality and operating system. It is more expensive to replace a virus-addled PC every two years than spend more on a piece of hardware that will last you three to five years and need the occasional memory upgrade or hardware. The replacement parts will be less expensive as it is later in the life cycle of the product.
Richard Kube, MD, Founder & CEO, Prairie Spine and Pain Institute, Peoria, Ill.: We look at costs as two different entities. There is cost of maintenance and cost of growth. We do not necessarily do much to curtail growth cost other than to analyze the expected return on investment that a cost should generate. As long as the return on investment is optimized and favorable, we increase these costs. For those maintenance costs associated with existing business, we continue to incorporate technology into our practice. Many types of practice management software and marketing materials for customer management are increasingly automated. This allows for current staff to be more productive and keep payroll costs in check. Also, over time, many of the software options have become more affordable, allowing us to save on both sides of the equation.
More Articles on Spine Surgery:
7 Spine Surgeons on Biggest Opportunities for Growth in Spinal Surgery
7 Spine Surgeons on Cash-Pay Options
5 Spine Surgeons on Negotiating Out-of-Network Payor Contracts
How to Keep Costs Down: 3 Spine Surgeons on Their Tactics FeaturedWritten by Laura Miller | September 20, 2012
Here are three spine surgeons discussing the biggest opportunities for growth in the spine field.
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