Hudson Medical Center: A Look at the New Hudson's Anticipated Ambulatory Surgery Center - Transcribed

[00:00:00] Pete Waggoner: Welcome to the optimal health podcast from Hudson physicians, getting you back to optimal health. When you're feeling sick, stressed, overwhelmed, or run down today is a great program. We're gonna talk about the surgery center located at. Hudson medical center. And we've got a group of gentlemen here that are going to be key to what, uh, is going to happen with this and how it plays out.

[00:00:27] So we'll start first with Matt Brandt who's the CEO of Hudson Physicians. He's been told to me as a bit of the conductor of the band. We have Dr. John Souza, who's an OB GYN at Hudson physician. He also serves as the co medical director of the surgery center. He'll be joined by Dr.

[00:00:43] Gary Schwartz of Associated Eye, by the way, thanks for allowing us to host this podcast and your facility here in new Richmond. And of course, Dr. Schwartz is also the president of associated eye. And then Dr. Dan Zismer, who's the managing director of Associated Eye and he's also the [00:01:00] president of the surgery center.

[00:01:01] So I think we have just about everybody covered here. So if this building catastrophicly went up, we'd have some trouble and we'd have issues. Well, before we get into that surgery centers, obviously going to be in the new building. Can you update us on how things are progressing there?

[00:01:16] Matt Brand: Yeah. So the Hudson medical center is a bout six months from opening right now. So we are on schedule to keep opening, early January of 2023 and all the concrete walls and all the prefab has been hung up. And they're actually right now pouring the concrete for the floors and mapping out the plumbing and the walls and all that stuff.

[00:01:34] So, and actually, construction of the surgery center, we'll start here in the next two weeks. So the building is progressing well and we're running.

[00:01:41] Pete Waggoner: So let's go with the president of the surgery center. Dr. on this one. Can you explain to maybe the lay person, what a surgery center is, how it's different from an actual.

[00:01:53] Dan Zismer: The ambulatory surgery center, especially the one that we're putting up is really designed by the doctors and by the staff that are [00:02:00] going to use it. When you look at surgery these days, upwards of probably about 75% of all surgeries are done in outpatient center. And with everybody involved cooperatively in that sign, we believe that we can, we can provide a superior patient experience and and cost-effectively for everybody involved.

[00:02:19] Pete Waggoner: So the biggest advantage is as you can cut down on cost and we all as patients and people know that that can absolutely take its toll.

[00:02:27] Dan Zismer: I think there's other lessons that have been learned that when you get. The doctors and the administrative folks involved in the actual design and the running of it, quality tends to go up because there are few errors.

[00:02:41] We can mitigate risks and we can control the patient experience much better.

[00:02:46] Pete Waggoner: To that point, could that be a setting where. If you were working out of hospitals, you could be in two or three different ones, depending upon where the practices and every setup's a little bit different. Whereas now you have a consistency [00:03:00] that can reduce those variables.

[00:03:02] Dan Zismer: Yeah. Good point on your part. It's not only consistency of the physicians working in it, but the consistency of the staff and the specialization of the staff. So we're going to have a number of different surgical specialties operating there, and each one will have its own staff to make that experience a high quality and a good one for the patient.

[00:03:22] Pete Waggoner: Dr. Schwartz.

[00:03:22] Dr. Gary Schwartz: So, yeah. Thanks. Let me dovetail onto what, what Dan was saying is another advantage is ambulatory surgery centers, like the one that we're building in Hudson, they're owned by physicians. They're owned by the people who are doing the surgery at the center, as opposed to hospitals, which are not they're owned by a hospital administration.

[00:03:43] So the ownership group are the ones who figure out what equipment to buy, what staff to hire, how staff are trained, et cetera. So by having the surgeons directly involved in those types of decisions, tends to give the [00:04:00] surgeons a better surgical experience, which then gets passed on to the.

[00:04:04] Pete Waggoner: And I'm sure you've been a ground floor guy, Dr. Sousa with these very experiences. So you must be looking forward to the situation too.

[00:04:13] Dr. Jonathan Susa: Yeah, we're really excited to be honest at Hudson physicians with the new building and with the surgery center, and we just think it provides a really exciting opportunity for the community, for the community of Hudson, for the surrounding, you know, towns and communities.

[00:04:29] You know, in all honesty, I'm looking forward to it from a medical standpoint as a surgeon and as a provider, but I'm really looking forward to. As a community member, because I think it's, it's really going to give the community of Hudson, you know, just another level of care.

[00:04:47] Pete Waggoner: Well, there's some staples to a community that we think about, whether it be churches or medical care, schools, infrastructural type things. And I think when you take a look at Hudson and its growth in the [00:05:00] area and how it's been, this is just the next step to it, where it's not just sort of hodgepodge together, but this is a legitimate foundation of what's going on in the community as well. Wouldn't you agree?

[00:05:10] Matt Brand: Yeah, I would agree. And then the, the surgery center, you start thinking about it. It has the capability as four operating rooms and three procedure rooms. And it has the ability to do a number of different surgeries. And I'll let the doctors explain that here shortly, but, where we can basically do every single surgery, 80% of them are 75%.

[00:05:28] Like Dan was saying in an outpatient setting and about half the. And a very convenient way where the patients get to go home the same day and at a quality that's hard to beat. And that's a great asset to the community.

[00:05:38] Pete Waggoner: Well, you said workload is off the charts here. It's higher in this new facility than it will be anywhere in the area.

[00:05:46] Matt Brand: Yeah, the Hudson medical center. And so the surgery center, his actual name was going to be called the valley surgery center, but in the valley. So what kind of enrichment Hudson area that, surgery center will actually do more surgeries than all the hospitals here in here in this area. [00:06:00]

[00:06:00] Pete Waggoner: Let's talk about surgeries and we'll, we'll come over you to your expertise Dr. Zismer, your perspective on some of the great things that are going to happen surgically here that maybe people wouldn't recognize that we even realize it's available.

[00:06:15] Dan Zismer: I think you might want to go to one of the surgeons for that.

[00:06:18] Pete Waggoner: Okay. Let's go to one of the surgeons. Let's start with Dr. Susa.

[00:06:22] Dr. Jonathan Susa: I liked that redirect, and I'm going to need the question repeated.

[00:06:25] Pete Waggoner: Okay. Because he was mesmerized, right? No, the question is what types of surgeries will be available.

[00:06:30] And can you even touch on some things between you and Dr. Schwartz that maybe an average person would even realize you could get there? Sure.

[00:06:37] Dr. Jonathan Susa: I can certainly speak from the Hudson physician's standpoint. You know, myself as an OB GYN, we are going to basically be able to do the full scope of OB GYN.

[00:06:47] Except for sectarian sections. Of course, we're not delivering babies at the surgery center and that requires a hospital and we look forward to continuing to partner with Hudson hospital for those services, but everything [00:07:00] from, ovarian cysts to hysterectomy, to what we call DNCs or dilatation and cure Taj from a OB GYN standpoint, our surgeons, our general surgeons are certainly looking forward to being able to take all gallbladders, appendix appendixes.

[00:07:16] They're the kind of the broad range of general surgery, the great majority of which they will be able to do. And the surgery center also at Hudson physicians, we have podiatrists who, you know, specialize in foot and ankle surgery who will be operating there. And then pain, sports medicine specialists with, you know, lower lumbar back injections, things like that.

[00:07:39] And I'd like to Dr. Schwartz speak to Associated Eye.

[00:07:41] Dr. Gary Schwartz: So I'll speak as an a non Hudson position surgeon. So there's a lot of other groups, including associated eyecare that were in talks with, to try to bring their surgeons into the surgery center as well. So we can do orthopedic cases there.

[00:07:55] We can do back cases, neurosurgical cases, we can do ENT case. [00:08:00] Oncology and then from an eyecare perspective, cause that's what I do. Essentially any type of eye surgery that we're currently doing in hospitals or surgery centers can all be done there. So we'll be able to do pediatric surgery there, all the way up through geriatric surgery there.

[00:08:15] So we as eye care providers are very excited because we'll be able to do just about everything there. But there's a host of other types of specialists that will also be invited in to be able to serve.

[00:08:25] Pete Waggoner: What percentage of the procedures that will occur in the surgery center are, I don't know if we come outpatient or are day type thing.

[00:08:34] What percentage is that? And will you have people in the ability do people stay over sometimes if they have to, or do they get transferred?

[00:08:40] Dan Zismer: We actually have designed for the ability to have two rooms for somebody to can have a 23 hour stay. Yeah. For example, if Dr. Souza does a complex case later in the afternoon and he end, or the patient may not be, be comfortable going home or having the patient go home, we can serve them for 23 hours, stay [00:09:00] and watch them and take care of them.

[00:09:02] Pete Waggoner: Was that by design or is that just how it goes?

[00:09:04] Dan Zismer: That was by design.

[00:09:05] Dr. Gary Schwartz: Not every ambulatory surgery center off to that.

[00:09:08] Pete Waggoner: Well, I absolutely fell into that benefit that's I didn't even, you know, they didn't, they didn't tell me about that here, folks that are listening. So I think that was by chance that that came up.

[00:09:18] I think that's a big advantage and a big deal, for, for people that know that if there's an issue that it's okay or if they have to stay that type of thing. So what is, you mentioned the term ambulatory. What does that word really mean in terms of surgery?

[00:09:35] Dan Zismer: Yeah, actually what it, what it means in on the street is you, you come in and you leave, you know, you're not, you're not staying overnight.

[00:09:42] It's not a hospital, but if you look at the, the level of sophistication and the complexity of, of surgeries that are going to be done there, we'll, we'll be doing as complex and, interesting and sophisticated surgeries as, as most hospitals.

[00:09:56] Pete Waggoner: From the past to today [00:10:00] and I'll let anyone of you guys take this.

[00:10:01] What has been the biggest difference as to why it is so effective, efficient, quick and recovery times are so reduced. What is the key part of that as an intrusive type thing? What is it?

[00:10:16] Dr. Gary Schwartz: Fundamentally, it's incision. So as technology has gotten better, most specialties of surgery are able to do surgeries through smaller incisions and the smaller the incision, the quicker recovery.

[00:10:29] Pete Waggoner: That's amazing. So that's usually what the problems were.

[00:10:32] Dr. Jonathan Susa: Okay. I think just an interesting point, you know, COVID has changed a lot of things for us, but one thing from the GYN world that it changed was our hysterectomy is used to all stay overnight. Two, three years ago. Everybody stayed overnight.

[00:10:44] Well when Colby. There was a hospital bed shortage. Nobody wanted to spend the night in the hospital, everybody wanted to go home. And so for the last three years, we've sent all of our hysterectomy home, with great success, to be totally honest.

[00:10:58] Pete Waggoner: When it started, how did you feel about that? [00:11:00]

[00:11:00] Dr. Jonathan Susa: We were nervous, honestly, we were nervous.

[00:11:02] And I said, I don't know if, you know, just because we weren't used to it, and there was there's, there are some nice things about being able to follow up in the morning and making sure everything's going well. But understandably people didn't want to spend the night in the hospital and understandably the hospitals were full and overworked and overwhelmed.

[00:11:17] And so that was a major change for us. And, it's gone really well. People enjoy going home. They enjoy sleeping in their own beds and we can follow up in the morning with a phone call or they can certainly come back and see us in the office the next day, if they need to. But, people who have done really, really well.

[00:11:31] Pete Waggoner: So overall, from let's talk the money part of things from the insurance companies to half the cost that you mentioned, Matt, and the differences there. That reduces stress for the customer. And then in terms of this, what is it like for you from an administrative perspective, dealing with collections on these, operation this way with, with shorter time periods in half the cost, is it a lot easier to collect?[00:12:00]

[00:12:00] Matt Brand: I don't know about the word easier. I mean, I still expense to patients and stuff, but I think it is to the, what we're finding is that what we can do is some unique things like bundle pricing together, fill that in every knows a cost up front. So patients know what they're getting themselves into.

[00:12:14] So it helps keeps them informed of what the costs are. Or a lot of times when you go to get care now, or, and you want in a house, we don't know what anything costs until later. So having more of that information upfront, will help them help the cost. And then just in general, because we are able to keep the costs down.

[00:12:27] It does make it easier for patients and for insurance companies and their employers who a lot of times pay those bills as well.

[00:12:33] Dr. Gary Schwartz: So, so part of this savings isn't actually seen by the patients, realistically, I mean, part of it is the payers and a lot of it's government payers. So if it's, if it's less expensive to have surgery in an ambulatory surgery, well, the more surgery is on an ambulatory surgery center.

[00:12:52] It costs the system less, and it should make things like Medicare and social security and things like that, just more viable over a longer period of [00:13:00] time. So the more surgery is done, an inventory surgery centers, the more money Medicare saves and everybody.

[00:13:07] Pete Waggoner: So it's an indirect saving to the patient.

[00:13:10] Right? You may see it in other areas of society or availabilities and how things work. Correct?.

[00:13:16] Dr. Jonathan Susa: You're good.

[00:13:16] Pete Waggoner: Okay. I flipped, I flipped the mic right over to Dr. Susie said, we're good. I like this guy. So I'm finally scheduling. Can you guys take us through how that process works when it comes to that? I suppose it depends upon the procedure, right?

[00:13:31] Some are going to be urgent or time sensitive, some may have, you know, whatever, but how does this allow for scheduling and keeping those books flowing that way?

[00:13:41] Dan Zismer: I think that the main variable there is the types of cases you don't do. So we're not doing trauma cases. We're not doing trauma or urgent cases by and large, so you can schedule better.

[00:13:54] And the patient doesn't get bumped because of an emergency surgery just, just came in. So you [00:14:00] got much more predictability. You get the, staff accustomed to working with the same physicians every day. The turnover is easier, more efficient and certainly better for the patient.

[00:14:12] Pete Waggoner: Very interesting, fascinating there.

[00:14:14] And then speaking of all of that, as far as staffing's concerned, when you go from Hudson physicians, which is a very mature group there to this setting, I'm sure you've got a lot of opportunities and openings, and let's be honest, people have been beaten up and you've been really good about this with your employees about COVID and dealing with it. But you know, how are you addressing that? And do you feel comfortable going into now staffing something as large as this?

[00:14:45] Matt Brand: Sure. Yeah. So, Hudson Physicians, we've actually added about 50 jobs over the last two years. So we've grown and added jobs as you're talking about, and we have a stable staff.

[00:14:53] And so as Associated Eye. So that's more of a, probably our biggest advantage of going to staff this, the new surgery center is that both of us operate [00:15:00] in the area. I have a large staff and we can start with some staff members already worked for us. So start transitioning to the new venture of the surgery center and then we'll keep adding from there.

[00:15:08] So, right off the bat, we have a great, new executive manager for the surgery center. Her name is Rita who actually works in, manages the surgery center for Associate Eye and then she'll help take over and start this project. And then all the doctors working in area to have a lot of surgical techs and stuff that worked with as well, that we are able to recruit and bring with us.

[00:15:24] Pete Waggoner: Okay, go ahead.

[00:15:25] Dr. Jonathan Susa: Yeah. I know I spoke about community earlier and I was just going to say, we know also that within the Hudson community, there are a lot of very, very good, surgical specialists are NS scrub techs, et cetera, who live in Hudson, who work in the twin cities maybe. And, you know, we are excited again to provide them potentially with an opportunity to work from home or not to work from home necessarily, but to work within your hometown and, you know, in healthcare, we're all jealous of the people who get to work virtually, right.

[00:15:53] I mean, as an OB GYN, I joke all the time. Unfortunately, my job does not, does not translate to that, but [00:16:00] you know, for people who don't have to make that long commute anymore, who can stay in Hudson and work in Hudson, we already know they're there. So if you're listening to this podcast, we're thinking about getting.

[00:16:10] I think we definitely are. I mean, I think people are, are starting to notice the building going up and they're making phone calls and they're wondering when it's going to open and, and that process is started. We're not quite full steam with the hiring process yet, but, you know, keep your eyes open.

[00:16:24] Pete Waggoner: That's a really underrated part of this whole situation to work in your community, serve your and the community. Let's be honest who wants to do that? Right?

[00:16:32] Dr. Gary Schwartz: I think it's important to understand. We all agree with this is we're not looking to put the local hospitals out of business.

[00:16:37] We all recognize the importance of a strong hospital system. You know, so we're not, we're not competing with Hudson hospital. We're not competing with Westfields. We're not looking to poach employees from any of these places, you know, we're looking to create a good place to work and we're hopeful that, that people.

[00:16:54] We don't like a long commute. We'll look close to home, and say, boy, I'd love to work there instead, [00:17:00] but we do value the importance of, of our local hospitals who are having just as much trouble hiring good people as we are. We do. We do recognize the value of those facilities, not being understaffed.

[00:17:10] Dr. Jonathan Susa: That's an excellent point. That's an excellent point. Dr. Schwartz, you know, we still need the hospitals. We still, we still need them for a lot of our services. We still need them for overnight care. You know, we still need them to be a viable part of the community as well.

[00:17:23] Pete Waggoner: You know, the one thing that I'm hearing is it takes, it was mentioned earlier.

[00:17:28] It takes the pressure maybe off, you know, when we're talking about overcrowding and, you know, you don't plan for that type of situation with COVID. And remember all these surgeries are just pushed back. Right? So now it probably allows for a little more of that. Emergency type care for hospitals, it's really be a hospital, which is what you think of, I think anyway, when that comes about.

[00:17:51] So I think it makes complete sense that it's more of a pressure reliever for that. And it's, it's moving, you know, things around, [00:18:00] but it's not necessarily taking business from anybody it's actually could be making their lives. Yeah.

[00:18:06] Matt Brand: I mean, in the, in the, the good with Hudson Hudson area and the St Croix county area on this whole area growing as much as it has it just providing a community needs.

[00:18:13] So, you know, we each have our role to play in that need. And, you know, our role is in the outpatient world and their role as the hospital and the inpatient area. So I think if we all do our jobs really well, that should be the quality that we're

[00:18:23] Pete Waggoner: looking for. Is there any promotion? I know you work obviously with a marketing company.

[00:18:28] That's great work for you. I don't know if I say it or do you care a lot media group's been amazing. Are you doing something specific for the surgery center to get the word out? Or how are we going about that?

[00:18:40] Dan Zismer: Yes, we certainly plan to. So as we continue to construct the actual construction starts probably next week.

[00:18:46] And, we expect to be open April 1 of 2023. So we will start a very measured and managed approach to marketing and get the word out probably in the third quarter of this year.

[00:18:59] Pete Waggoner: That's [00:19:00] amazing. So you've got that all figured out. And one final caveat here before we wrap this up, when we recorded this podcast, there's obviously the groundbreaking ceremony for the new medical center in new Richmond, which we're at your associated eyecare facility here in new Richmond.

[00:19:18] The two of you, Hudson physicians, Associated Eye, are working together. And, it was a really, to me. If I'm this group of individuals, I'd be absolutely thrilled about the volume of people that showed an interest in what was happening from the community. I was very, I was stunned that there must have been a hundred, 125 people there.

[00:19:41] Dan Zismer: Yeah. You know, it was a very warm, welcome and associated eyecare has been in the community with, with this particular clinic, I think nearly 30 years. But to have the community turnout for something like this feels real good to all of us. And it's going to be just terrific to be housed with Hudson physicians in a brand new [00:20:00] building.

[00:20:00] And you get that opportunity for collegiality and collaboration of staff and clinicians. And it does nothing but make the, make the quality of care better for

[00:20:10] Pete Waggoner: the community from an entrepreneurial perspective. And I claim to be one it's really cool to watch groups figure it out and from the outside, looking in, you guys have clearly figured it out as far as next steps for healthcare.

[00:20:28] And I think are just pushing the envelope here in the St. Croix valley. And, I think everybody's has to take notice and say, wow, this is really new thinking and in ways to be better. And it has to feel good from the inside.

[00:20:45] Dr. Jonathan Susa: I'd done. I mean, it does work again. We're excited, you know, we're just, we're excited about the new facility.

[00:20:51] We're excited about the new opportunity. We're excited about what it means for, for the whole area.

[00:20:58] Pete Waggoner: Guys. Any other closing [00:21:00] thoughts? Did we cover it all, Matt? You happy? Yeah, that was Grampy. Mattson.

[00:21:04] Matt Brand: Thank you very much. I think you did a great job.

[00:21:06] Pete Waggoner: Thank you. Gentlemen, I appreciate your taking the time out of your busy schedule to join us.

[00:21:11] For the optimal health podcast. This was the June edition. We'll have probably another exciting one coming up for you. Who knows what the topic is. It will be, but it would be great by the way, Dr. D'Souza with the headaches off the charts. If you haven't heard that one, listen to it. You want to talk to the person who is passionate about her craft, just like Dr. Schwartz and his, eye one, we did check those two out. They were very good. So thanks guys. Everybody take care. Have yourself a great June so long everybody.