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A Revolutionary Rise in Ophthalmic Office-Based Surgery in 2024

More than four million cataract surgeries are performed in the United States each year. This number is growing 3-4% annually and is expected to reach six million by 2030.1 Unfortunately, not only is the number of surgeons decreasing, but so is their surgical time as ASCs are de-prioritizing cataract surgery in favor of more lucrative surgeries. This is creating one of the greatest imbalances of supply and demand that our healthcare system has ever experienced.

Office-based surgery (OBS) solves this problem and is becoming more widely accepted in ophthalmology. It’s an unprecedented move to physician-led healthcare that’s safe, convenient, and efficient. And that makes it good for your patients and your practice.  

The evolution of OBS closely mirrors the transition from hospital-based surgery to ASC-based surgery. 

Today, 2.5% of cataract surgeries are performed in OBS suites2, and this number is growing, according to a survey conducted by iOR Partners. 66% of surgeons will likely incorporate OBS in the next 1-5 years. In addition to patient demand, several other factors contribute to the rapid shift in the acceptance curve.

1. The safety question has been answered: 60,000 successful outcomes.

In the realm of medical procedures, safety takes center stage. With over 60,000 ophthalmic surgeries in the office setting, it’s the epitome of safe and effective surgery. Kaiser Permanente’s 2016 study1, the Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery’s 2023 study3, and iOR Partners’ real-world data confirm OBS outcomes match or exceed safety outcomes in other settings, establishing it as the gold standard.

2. You can get Medicare reimbursement for OBS.

There have been many questions about OBS reimbursement. You can get reimbursed for OBS; you’re simply paid in a different way. Instead of a Traditional Primary-National reimbursement of the facility fee, OBS surgeons receive a Secondary-Local reimbursement of their professional fee based on local Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) codes in all 12 local jurisdictions. Learn more about OBS reimbursements.

3. Surgeons want more control over the surgical process.

Surgeon Empowerment: OBS revolutionizes the surgeon’s experience, placing the entire surgical process under their control. Surgeons have complete autonomy over their schedules, equipment, procedures, and the patient experience

4. OBS invests money back into ophthalmology.

It is becoming clear that office-based surgery is the future of ophthalmic surgery. Now is the chance to be part of this exciting shift in ophthalmic surgery! Do you want to lead or follow the next evolution in ophthalmology?

  1. Ianchulev T, Litoff D, Ellinger D, Stiverson K, Packer M. Office-Based Cataract Surgery: Population Health Outcomes Study of More than 21 000 Cases in the United States. Ophthalmology. 2016 Apr;123(4): 723-8.
  2. Market Scope Ophthalmic Market Perspectives. Volume 27; Issue 9, September 22, 2023
  3. Real-world data collection for ophthalmic office-based surgery. iOR Partners. Updated April 12, 2023. Accessed September 7, 2023.