Back to home November 2013
All-Star Joint Center Helps Patients Before, During and After Surgery
Approximately 70 percent of patients who opt for joint replacement surgery choose to participate in the All-Star Joint Center prior to undergoing the procedure, says Alex Greenwood, orthopedic comanagement director, Lee Memorial Hospital. “This helps the patient before and after surgery,” he says. “We encourage patients to have a ‘coach,’ someone who should be involved from the beginning.”
Most joint replacement patients spend two or three nights in the hospital, and must have someone at home to help them once they leave the hospital, or they must go to a rehabilitation facility to recover before returning home.
“Most patients secure home health services after they go home,” Alex says.
The All-Star Joint Center experience includes information from medical professionals, support for all phases of the surgical process, physical therapy and a fun, sports-themed environment that encourages recovery. Orthopedic nurse navigator Lisa Looney helps facilitate preoperative education about the procedure, recovery and rehabilitation. “I am introduced to patients at the preoperative joint class and encourage them to call with any questions or concerns,” Lisa says. “Attending the class helps alleviate some of their anxiety and helps them understand the recovery process.”
About three months after their discharge, patients receive an invitation to a reunion luncheon, along with other patients who completed surgery about the same time. “This gives people an opportunity to discuss their experiences throughout the entire surgical process, and it helps them learn from their experiences,” Lisa says.
Betty Kindt had a total knee replacement in August and worked with Lisa as part of her surgical process, from the time she attended the All-Star joint class to the time she was discharged home from the skilled nursing facility. “I was in so much pain,” Betty says. “For three years I kept saying I was going to get a knee replacement, and it finally got to the point where I could not walk—I shuffled everywhere.”
Meeting Lisa helped put Betty’s mind at ease. “She explained the unknown,” Betty says. “It was well worth going through the orientation. One thing that really meant a lot was that my room had a Murphy bed so my sister could stay with me. She was my coach.”
The joint replacement experience is further enriched through a partnership with 24 area orthopedic surgeons. The Lee Memorial Health System leadership team and physicians co-manage orthopedic services, establishing a shared vision, patient-centered process and world-class clinical protocols. The result is the highest level of care and an excellent patient experience.
Betty was so pleased with her new knee that she plans to repeat the procedure on her left knee next year.
To schedule an appointment or learn more about joint replacement procedures, call orthopedic nurse navigator Lisa Looney or coordinator Janice Graygo at 239-343-3411.
“For three years I kept saying I was going to get a knee replacement, and it finally got to the point where I could not walk—I shuffled everywhere,” says Betty Kindt.
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