Hospitals and outside surgery centers nationwide have been scrambling recently to get joint replacement patients out the door as fast as possible to cut costs and conform to new Medicare guidelines.
But how fast is too fast?
In January of this year Medicare began allowing total knee replacements as an “outpatient procedure,” with some patients spending as little as eight hours under medical care for what is still a major operation that involves sawing off bones and installing large mechanical parts in the body.
Despite the new outpatient classification, Sebastian River Medical Center Director of Orthopedics Lisa Cox seems intent on taking a somewhat more cautious approach.
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