By Suzanne Hodsden
Zimmer Biomet announced its plans to leverage the company’s years of consulting experience with its cultivated portfolio of technologies and analytical tools to create an “end-to-end” suite of clinical services called Signature Solutions. The intent of the service is to drive greater efficiency and improve patient outcomes in hospitals while working with the hospitals’ existing infrastructure.
The shift toward value-based care has been on the move for decades, but the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has accelerated its evolution, according to MDO chief editor Doug Roe. Hospitals — said Roe in a recent column — are moving away from “traditional pay-for-service” models and are looking to control more of the “complete patient healthcare continuum.”
In recent years, the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) has been implementing programs to hold hospitals directly accountable for the quality of care they deliver to Medicare beneficiaries and providing additional payments based on spending performance. Zimmer Biomet highlighted the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model Act (CCJRM) and the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act, both passed in 2015, as examples of this “bundled payment” approach to reimbursement.
“As patient outcomes figure more prominently into bundled payment environment, healthcare institutions are under increased pressure to minimize inefficiencies along the entire episode of care while delivering superior quality of care and a positive patient experience,” said Todd Dietrick, orthopedic surgeon at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena California, in a press release.
Zimmer Biomet has been working with hospitals nationwide since the mid-1990s, consulting with healthcare providers on how to drive efficiency in their musculoskeletal programs, reported a press release. The Signature Solutions platform integrates Zimmer Biomet’s consulting experience with emerging digital health technologies and both existing and future medtech and hospital partnerships.
Signature Solutions’ core offerings include engagement tools that will educate patients about their procedure through pre- to post-operative protocols. Proprietary analytical tools will help hospitals to better collect and process their outcomes data, which can factor in the level of reimbursement provided for each procedure. Lastly, the service will provide expert consulting services to help streamline workflow and increase overall productivity in both surgical and rehab centers.
Signature Solutions leverages Zimmer Biomet’s experience in the “new health landscape” and is “designed to work seamlessly with the institutions’ existing infrastructure to improve quality outcomes, provide more efficient care, and increase provider throughput,” said David Dvorak, president and CEO of Zimmer Biomet, in a press release, adding that he looks forward to helping hospitals identify cost-saving protocols.
For the initial launch, Zimmer Biomet will offer Signature Solutions to a select group of academic facilities’ musculoskeletal healthcare service departments, with a broader launch planned for 2017.
Zimmer Biomet recently announced its collaboration with the Indo UK Institutes of Health to improve patient access to affordable healthcare in India.
In 2013, Medtronic launched a similar Hospital Solutions Business, which aimed at establishing partnerships with European hospitals and driving cost-savings and better efficiencies. Last year, Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy Synthes launched an outpatient joint replacement program to improve patient outcomes through rehabilitation process post-surgery.