The market size of the spinal industry in the United States is approximately $6.8 billion and growing. Medtronic is the leader in the U.S. spinal market, holding a nearly 36% share. DePuy,
Synthes, NuVasive, and Stryker, among others, also compete in this space.
Spinal implants can generally be divided into the following sub-groups.
- Fusion devices (Plates, screws, rods, hooks)
- Interbody fusion devices (cages and spacers)
- Spinal bone graft and/or bone growth material (product which promotes bone growth or fusion)
- Spinal cord stimulations (devices implanted to alleviate pain)
Fusion procedures represent a significant volume of a hospital's spine cases. Furthermore, lumbar fusion procedures represent a strong majority of fusion cases. According to Orthopedic Network News, the cost of implants used for lumbar fusion has increased 14% since last year. However, payments from Medicare for lumbar fusions have increased only 3% since last year. There is also anecdotal evidence suggesting managed care companies are moving towards DRG style reimbursements and away from carve-outs for implants. Increasing costs and shrinking reimbursements are a common problem hospitals are facing, not only in spine, but in many of their service lines.
Having a basic understanding of how a fusion procedure is performed and the role the implants play in pain relief will increase your comfort level when discussing pricing during your next negotiation. This web link provides a high level overview of spinal fusions:
A surgeon has many different implant options to alleviate back pain. Traditional plates, rods, and screws can be used. Interbody Fusion Devices such as cages or spacers can be used. Spinal bone graft or spinal growth factors can also be used.
What product mix are the spine surgeons utilizing in the hospital? How much are they using? Are you getting the best deal possible? Can you track these products by case for cost analysis?
SHS can help guide you through these complex questions.