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Research

The New Rules of Ambulatory Surgery Competition

The New Rules of Ambulatory Surgery Competition

In markets across the country, hospital and health system leaders are witnessing massive growth in the lucrative but highly competitive market for ambulatory surgery. In some cases, volumes are being relocated from hospitals to ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs). But in many more instances, ambulatory surgery presents a rare nugget of organic growth. Unfortunately, incumbent hospitals and health systems are often poorly positioned to win in this growing market, especially as they face new competitors.

This research report guides hospital and health system leaders to implement a dedicated and winning ASC strategy to compete against new and traditional competitors alike.

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Three steps to build a winning ASC strategy

Step 1: Refine strategy

Health systems often view ASCs as strategic investments that will enable them to counter (or even block) competitors or to more closely align with physicians. However, to realize the full benefit of investment in ASCs, organizations must also consider how ASCs will support broader system-wide objectives. While the objectives of each ASC within a hospital’s ambulatory network may vary, every facility needs a specific purpose that supports a broader strategic goal.

Step 2: Assemble facility footprint

Given the differences in ASC and hospital economics, it's paramount that leaders operate ASCs differently than hospital ORs. They will need to evaluate options for a go-to market strategy that achieves highly efficient operations and attracts physician partners.

Step 3: Compete to win

Establishing clear strategic goals and assembling the footprint of the ASC network are important foundational steps. But leaders also need to determine how they will appeal to proceduralists to bring their cases to the ASC and then win the preference of key referrers in their market to generate referrals.

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