Published 12/1/2011

Readers share concerns, kudos

MedPAC’s “fix” doesn’t fix anything
Our office overhead is approaching 55 percent. If inflation and new mandates from all levels of government continue, even flat reimbursement for 10 years is a joke—let alone 19 percent cuts.

Instead of orthopaedic care in America, we’ll be left with only the easiest cases being handled in the most profitable fashion. There will be no time for compassion and no one willing to take on anything time-consuming and, though vital, not profitable to our practices. I dread the future of health care.

Bruce N. Edwards, MD
Hagerstown, Md.

Residents and business education
I read Dr. Dempsey Springfield’s letter (“Residents and business education”) in the October 2011 issue and could not disagree with him more. His final sentence implies that business conferences would supplant medical conferences. Of course they shouldn’t...but they must be included as an important facet of physician education.

Residency directors and mentors wish to have their newly minted orthopaedists complete their training with strong diagnostic acumen and surgical skills. Why would they want them to have no training or skills when it comes to understanding how the business side of an orthopaedic practice works?

This knowledge may protect them from future costly mistakes and financial heartache. Further, confident skills in understanding orthopaedic business practice may afford them more time to focus on clinical matters. Just as the clinical/surgical aspects of orthopaedics have changed and become more complex in the past decades, so has the business side of practice. Not teaching something about business is just “marching the sheep to slaughter.”

Since my residency I’ve had 20 years of orthopaedic practice business hard knocks and wish that my mentors had been knowledgeable, protective, and kind enough to teach me something beyond the operating room and patient clinics.

Tedd L. Weisman, MD
Milford, Conn.

Office-based orthopaedists
Since I’m totally retired, I read with interest about office-based orthopaedics (October 2011). Kudos! There is much to offer by being an office-based, nonsurgical orthopaedist.

William. H. Ray, MD
Tyler, Texas

Setting Now straight
welcomes reader comments and efforts to “set AAOS Now straight.” We reserve the right to edit your correspondence for length, clarity, or style. Send your letters to the Editor, AAOS Now, 6300 N. River Rd., Rosemont, IL 60018; fax them to (847) 823-8033; or email them to