September 8, 2021

ICYMI: Key Takeaways from the AAOS Annual Meeting of 2021

Hallie Lucas ( ValueHealth), Mikayla McGrath (Force Therapeutics), Alexandra Fierens (Force Therapeutics), Matt Donna McNeill ( ValueHealth), Martonik (Force Therapeutics) Hallie Lucas ( ValueHealth), Mikayla McGrath (Force Therapeutics), Alexandra Fierens (Force Therapeutics), Matt Donna McNeill ( ValueHealth), Martonik (Force Therapeutics)

The long-awaited AAOS annual meeting of 2021 took place in San Diego, and our Force team members, Mikayla McGrath, Amy Babington, Alexandra Fierens, and Matt Martonik were able to attend.

What is the AAOS annual meeting? This powerful networking conference hosted by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons allows the orthopedic population to gather, educate, and collaborate for innovation. Force Therapeutics continuously attends this annual meeting to engage in important conversations with industry leaders in orthopedics to understand and cultivate blossoming trends, new technologies and strategic partnerships.

In this blog, we will highlight the key takeaways from this year’s AAOS annual meeting. First, here’s a quick overview of the Force team’s week at the conference:

  • Force Therapeutics hit a record of eight posters and podiums presented by our research partners at: Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Connecticut Joint Replacement Institute, & ValueHealth.
  • At the event we were able to reconnect with some of our partner clients including Dartmouth Medical Center, Geisinger, Hartford Healthcare, and ValueHealth in person and explore the Academy Hall.

Key takeaways from the AAOS conference:

Intraoperative Monitoring and Implant Data

Having data visualizations with a patient engagement tool for admins grows increasingly important for many reasons. Intraoperative monitoring data gives admins the power to illustrate ROI by marrying patient outcomes with physicians using the platform, implant cost, and increased costs per year.

Opioid Usage, The Opioid Epidemic, and Pain Management

Opioid utilization continues to be top of mind for physicians and admins alike as we continue to combat the opioid epidemic in the United States. A crucial aspect of opioid sparing is physicians having access to technology which allows for tracking opioid use among patients throughout their recovery episode.

Force Therapeutics’ research on understanding pain management through opioids in recovering patients suggests that providers can prescribe protocols that adjust to meet patient's individual needs, without adding additional pressure to the opioid over-prescription epidemic. Providers that can monitor medications, pain, satisfaction, and all other relevant outcomes naturally create value for patients who are apprehensive about taking opioids, and can strategically navigate patients to avoid negative recovery experiences.

There is still a need for further research on alternative pain management protocols which could mitigate the prescribing of opioids in unnecessary circumstances without compromising patient satisfaction and outcomes. Initial studies in the field by Force include Prevalence and Impact of Unused Opioids Among THA and TKA Patients: Pain Management and Satisfaction Insights.

Biologic Recovery Approach

Bone and Joint 360 describes the biologic recovery approach as seeking to improve clinical outcomes by promoting tissue regeneration and healing. These approaches can be used in isolation or as an augment to surgical interventions.

This type of treatment is predicted to be a leading topic for research over the next few years, following the many recent advances and inconclusive results on cost and efficacy of the procedures. As this approach becomes increasingly more relevant, research will show if there is sufficient evidence for biologics to become a clinical approach in orthopedics.

Multi-Disciplinary Collaboration

Physicians’ historical non-operative and operative volume is continuously evolving and increasing on the non-operative patient side. Collaborations across the full spectrum of care will be pushed for orthopedic physicians to take on even more in the latter half of this year. The leading factor of this recent trend is that patients simply wish to avoid surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This includes the non-operative patient population, and other specialties such as bariatrics, cardiac, etc. AAOS and other parties pushing for standardization/protocols across these subspecialties. Because of this, we are seeing AAOS and other organizations push for standardization of protocols within these subspecialty categories.

Inpatient vs. Outpatient

Patient satisfaction and outcomes will remain a leader in research trends as laws and regulations continue to adapt and payers become an increasingly bigger part of the equation. Those who do not have Same Day Discharge (SDD) programs are continuing to look for solutions for how to make this work for their organization, facilities, and patients.

As value based care weaves into organizations and throughout the healthcare systems, payers will need to start footing the cost to create the staff, support, and program enhancements needed to help push the evolution.

Leverage a Research Partner

Force Therapeutics research efforts in partnership with our clients continue to correlate with major themes within the orthopedic space. Our clients are spearheading important issues to further improve patient outcomes and satisfaction while being cost and time effective for their organizations and patients.