Skip to content

Office-Based Surgery: A Smart Choice Financially and a Smart Choice for Patients 

Minnesota-Based Surgeon Transforms Practice with Two Office-Based Surgical Suites  

Mark Lobanoff, MD, lead surgeon at OVO LASIK + Lens, opened two office-based, patient-centered surgical suites in 2021. His practice planned for growth and found adding a second suite at the onset more economical than adding another down the road. With two surgeons, three optometrists, and over 40 staff members, they’ve performed  thousands of procedures since launching with absolutely no infections. Dr. Lobanoff shares key learnings in his transition to office-based surgery in this post.  

Four Reasons I Made the Move to Office-Based Surgery and the Impact on My Practice 

  1. Surgical Time: I was the Medical Director of an ASC for 16 years that I helped design and build, and yet I still had very little block time. Surgery was limited to one day a week with more lucrative specialties taking precedence.  
    Now, with 24/7 access to two in-office surgical suites, I manage my schedule, my equipment, and my team. I no longer wait for surgical time at the ASC, and my patients don’t have to wait for surgery.  My surgical volume has increased 3x since the transition.   
  2. Surgical Revenue: OBS has had a huge impact on both surgical volume and revenue. Most ASCs have partnered with a management company that runs the facility.  Unfortunately, these companies demand 51% ownership and thus take 51% of the profits.  Our practice was losing 51% of every dollar we made to the ASC, and that simply wasn’t working for me or my partner, David Whiting, MD. The retention of surgical revenue within the practice with OBS was a game changer for our clinic.  

    Furthermore, we have control over our overhead costs.  I order my own lenses, with no ASC handling fee.  This is especially important for our refractive lens exchange patients where we use femtosecond lasers for precision and almost always use a specialty IOL.  ASCs can charge exorbitant amounts for both of these features, costs that made RLE untenable.  Now we have no “upcharge” for femto or specialty IOLs.  We can make the procedure affordable to the patient instead of lining the pockets of the ASC management company.  In short, OBS eliminates the middleman, and that’s good for business.  Equally important, since we only use oral sedation with OBS, there’s no need for an anesthesiologist or CRNA. And that’s good news in light of the shortage we’re experiencing. 
  3. Practice Growth: Premium lens use has increased by 40% from when we were ASC-based to nearly 93% with OBS. That’s not a typo.  We are now using premium IOLs in 93% of our cataract patients.  Additionally, our office-based surgical suites have been crucial to the advancement of our Restorative Lens Exchange (RLE) program. OBS lets us offer premium femtosecond laser-enhanced bilateral same-day refractive lens surgeries. It’s become equally, if not more desirable, to LASIK, and we’ve experienced explosive growth as a result. 
  4. Surgeon Control: I was never in control of the OR or the scheduling process in the ASC. I was working with someone else’s equipment and a staff I rarely knew. Now I can utilize both suites without the limitations of a hospital or ASC, and I control everything that happens in surgery from start to finish.  

    In my OBS, I get to choose the technology which most benefits my patients.  One such technology has been  Eyetelligence, the surgery planning software I developed for Bausch and Lomb that drives the great refractive outcomes.  When I opened my practice, I set out to redefine LASIK and cataract surgery, and OBS and Eyetelligence have helped me do it. 

    Don’t get me wrong. There’s a time and place for an ASC. In fact, I still have access to one right here in our building should more complicated cases arise. It’s truly the best of both worlds.  

“With round-the-clock access to two in-office surgical suites, I have control over my OR and my day. The two years since we launched the suites have literally flown by “in the blink of an eye,” with one successful outcome after another.” 


My Patients’ Experience with Office-Based Surgery  

At OVO LASIK + Lens, our goal is to continually improve the patient experience. We take that challenge very seriously, and in doing so we want each patient to have a personalized experience that fits their eyecare needs. And OBS made that happen.  

Patients feel comfortable from the moment they sit down. Their surgery is scheduled at a convenient time in a place that’s familiar to them. They can relax with a team they trust with no physical, no fasting, no crowded waiting rooms, no needles or IVs, and no surprises when it comes to cost. Instead, they’re treated to a comfortable, spa-like experience in one of our cutting-edge surgical suites. Their loved ones are right there watching the procedure start to finish from behind the glass, and that’s so reassuring for patients.  

Recovery is quicker and surgery time is significantly less than that of an ASC. With OBS, we can customize each patient’s eyecare, while adjusting prices to fit their needs. From initial consultation through post-surgical care, everything’s in one place. 

“Patients talk to friends and family about their positive experiences with OBS, and that’s increased referrals significantly.” 

My Team’s Experience with Office-Based Surgery  

We have a tremendous team of some of the country’s most experienced physicians, optometrists, and technicians, and OBS has given them all a chance to shine. The surgical team looks forward to the day or days they spend in OBS. They have more input in the surgical process and more time to spend with each patient. They’re completely invested in the process and often empowered to manage workflow and make critical decisions.  

“OBS not only adds variety to my team’s week; it gives a new dimension to their workday.” 

Our Experience with iOR Partners 

iOR’s dedication to the task at hand was impressive, to say the least. In just eight months, they helped plan, design, and launch not one, but two state-of-the-art surgical suites. Because they’re a physician-led team, they understand the work we do, as well as the equipment and supplies we require.  

Purchasing new equipment in the ASC often took nine months to a year. iOR gets us what we need in just a few weeks. And with their iSupplyTM ordering system, materials management becomes so much easier. Additionally, they trained my staff, provided billing and reimbursement support, and handled accreditation and compliance. Equally important, they answered each of our questions from inception to launch.  

“I can’t say enough about iOR’s passion and dedication to the job. I couldn’t have done it without them, nor would I have tried.”  

In summary, the patient experience, my staff’s experience, and my experience have been so positive with OBS. It’s physician-controlled and patient-centric. I’ve never had that before. And I’d never give it up. OBS is no longer the vision of the future. We’ve had two surgical suites up and running for two years now, and it’s given me the flexibility and autonomy I’ve always wanted. OBS is a safe, convenient, and affordable choice for my patients that’s changed the course of my practice for the better. And the sky’s the limit when it comes to growth.  

Saint Louis Park, Minnesota 

Find Out More: 

With 100+ iOR suites open or in development, it’s never been easier to transition to OBS. iOR invites you to a complimentary feasibility analysis to see how your practice can benefit. Click here to get started.