The COVID-19 pandemic is having a significant effect on physician practices in Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, including the number of elective procedures being postponed, when normal operations might resume, the adoption of telemedicine, delivery of physician education and interactions with industry. To find out more, SmartTRAK Analyst Freddy Buntoum interviewed Steven Sampson, DO, founder of The Orthobiologic Institute (TOBI) and an internationally-recognized expert in the field of non-surgical orthopedics and the science of sports medicine. To hear Dr. Sampson’s take on how things might evolve throughout the rest of 2020, and how his practice and organization are supporting patients and other stakeholders, click on the following video to listen to the interview recorded via Uberconference (25:20 minutes). A transcript of the interview can be downloaded below.
First of all, from your perspective, how do you think the orthopedics and sports medicine community is coping with the COVID crisis, which continues to change on a daily basis?
Dr. Sampson: I think that sports medicine and orthopedic physicians, in general, are very resilient and will weather this storm and come out doing well, but it is very challenging at the moment as most colleagues that I've been able to connect with around the country have closed their offices or really reduced their clinic at various time points. For example, in California we may have started some office closure before other colleagues in New Jersey, but currently, now we're all in the same boat where we're really minimizing our patient care in terms of inpatient or elective procedures.
In terms of the financial impact on practices, can you provide some insight about how practices, including yours, are navigating the COVID-19 crisis?
Dr. Sampson: Currently, it's very difficult financially because our office has now been closed for six weeks and so we have elected to furlough our employees with the intentions, and hopes, of bringing them back when we're cleared from government and regulatory guidelines to safely do so. So there's virtually minimal incoming revenue from patient care currently. And so we're just trying to reduce our overhead until we can successfully reopen.
We are doing telemedicine consults with our patients and we've been getting a favorable experience in being able to provide them some benefit, whether it's peace of mind, strategizing the game plan, providing a home exercise program with guided videos, prescribing medications, and scheduling treatments out several weeks in anticipation of opening so that the patients have a strategy moving forward...
If you would like to download the complete transcript of the interview with Steven Sampson, please click the button below.