Dr. Rockwood, Jr. explains if rotator cuff surgery is an outpatient procedure.
Dr. Rockwood, Jr.:
As far as I am concerned, no. But I am sure there are places who would do that as an outpatient. The patients are having, it is painful. The other thing that I have been fussing about is that most of the insurance companies say, well doctor, you have to bring the patient in the morning in surgery, and then when the patient gets out of surgery you’ve got to send them home.
I say, well, send the patient some place else because I don’t deal that way. Particularly patients I see that come from all over United States, I can’t see them and book them for surgery that day. I’ll tell them my schedule would open up in two months, so therefore go home and do this. You come in to San Antonio the night before. I want to see you that afternoon. We will admit you, anesthesia will see you, and I want to be sure that nothing has happened. Is your blood work all right or your urinary tract is okay?
So I don’t want to take anybody to surgery unless I know kind of what they are doing. So then I get them into the operating room and we do what we have to do, and I tell the patient they go home when I say they can go home.
I get calls from the insurance carrier, and usually it’s a high school dropout who says, “Doctor, you’ve had the patient in hospital one day, and we are not going to pay for anything more.” I said, “Good, you come down here and discharge this patient because I am not going to discharge the patient until he’s ready.”
About Dr. Rockwood, Jr., M.D.:
Charles A. Rockwood, Jr., M.D., continues to perform complex shoulder surgery in his private practice, and as a consultant, lends his expertise to other orthopaedic surgeons throughout the country. Dr. Rockwood has authored numerous journal articles and audiovisual presentations and has served as editor of several textbooks.