LAS VEGAS, March 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — By employing a customized, more holistic approach to total knee replacement, a new outpatient program from Zimmer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE and SIX: ZMH) is finding success in addressing emerging challenges faced by hospitals, physicians and patients considering the procedure.
The new Z23™ Outpatient Knee Program uses a simplified surgical approach, a personalized care plan and at-home recovery for select patients – backed by an extensive training program – to enable surgeons to provide total knee replacement using the Zimmer Persona® Knee System in an outpatient setting. The program focuses on several key factors, including the establishment of quality team members to promote outstanding patient experiences; systematic and predictable patient selection; the alignment of objectives across all members of the healthcare team; and strict adherence to and fulfillment of discharge plan objectives.
“Data shows that one of the most prevalent reasons people delay total knee replacement is the fear associated with the procedure and recovery – and the Z23 Outpatient Program is proving very successful at directly alleviating those fears among the right patients,” said John Walters, Marketing Director, Knees. “The Z23 Program sets the tone for a new paradigm of care by providing higher-quality outcomes, lower overall costs, more efficient teamwork and asset management, and an overall commitment to continuous improvement.”
Prior to offering the Z23 Program, participating surgeons and staff undergo an intensive training regiment covering all aspects of the program, including patient selection and preparation, operating procedures and immediate post-op care, discharge management and remote patient monitoring, and in-person and virtual physical therapy.
Z23 Outpatient Program is based on a protocol designed by Michael Kolczun II, MD, and has been used successfully by the Cleveland Clinic’s Lorain Ambulatory Surgery Center on nearly 1,000 patients over the past six years. Dr. Kolczun is a widely respected and accomplished total joint and sports surgeon and has been with the Cleveland Clinic since 1999.
“With the ongoing and significant shift in demographics creating increasing demand for total knee replacement, we recognized that the time had come for a new strategy maximizing value for all stakeholders – patients, surgeons, medical staff, and payors – by achieving the best outcomes at the lowest cost,” explained Dr. Kolczun. “We are certainly encouraged by the success we’ve seen to date with the protocol, and are very excited about the possibility to implement on a much larger scale with Zimmer, especially given their belief in eliminating compromise and creating a new era in total knee replacement.”
As the market for total knee replacement continues its growth in the years to come, the demand for outpatient programs will grow as well. The number of total knee replacements performed annually, for example, increased by 54 percent between 1997 and 2012. Further studies show that 10 percent of the total population is expected to have undergone at least one total knee replacement by the time they reach the age of 80.1-3
“As total knee replacement has become a more reliable surgery to treat osteoarthritis, our patients are presenting to us younger and healthier than ever,” Dr. Koczun added. “So why should these otherwise healthy patients be subjected to a hospital stay when we have a proven outpatient solution like the Z23 Healthy Patient, Sick Knee™ program to address the same procedure?”
A study of the initial group of outpatient total knee replacements from fall 2013 to present-day found just 1 percent of patients were readmitted within 30 days of the procedure, with no reoperations to date.4