By James Girards

To the surprise of few, a US Government study has shown that when surgeons own the distributor company that sells spinal implants there are more surgeries to implant them.  These companies are known as "Physician Owned Distributorships" or "PODs." The study states --

In FY 2011, PODs supplied devices used in nearly one in five spinal fusion surgeries billed to Medicare. Spinal surgeries that used POD devices used fewer devices but did not have lower per surgery device costs than surgeries that did not use POD devices. Among the hospitals in our sample, about a third reported buying spinal devices from PODs. When hospitals in our sample began buying from PODs, their rates of spinal surgery grew faster than the rate for hospitals overall. Finally, in FY 2012, surgeons performed more spinal surgeries at hospitals in our sample that purchased from PODs than at those that did not purchase from PODs."

So, whenever you have a surgeon tell you he wants to do spinal surgery on you to fix your problems, always ask if he or she has an ownership interest in the company hawking tho9se implants.  Then, get a second opinion.

For more information or help with a medical malpractice case, please call Girards Law Firm at the following numbers: Texas: (214)346-9529; Arkansas: (501) 288-9529, and Oklahoma: (405) 598-7825

Comments are closed.