Who is the typical cataract patient? To answer that question, we launched the OOSS Cataract Patient Profile Survey last fall. We wanted to quantify what our members perceive anecdotally. And we wanted hard data to better inform the debate over a CMS proposal to reimburse office-based cataract surgery for “routine cases,” defined as those in which the patients were not compromised by other health conditions.
So just how many of the cataract patients treated in the ASC setting would fit the CMS definition of a “routine case?” Our survey suggests that very few would. The responding centers reported that only 3% of their patients reported taking no medications and only 5.6% had none of the surveyed health conditions and diseases. Almost 90 % of the patients were 60 and over with 16% of those patients 80 or older. Almost two-thirds had high blood pressure, while 45% had cardiovascular disease and 41% had endocrine disease.
In short, we found that the “routine case” as described by CMS — a patient without complicating health conditions — is exceedingly rare in the ophthalmic ASC.
For complete survey findings, CLICK HERE to download the OOSSMark InBrief summary of the OOSS Cataract Patient Profile Survey.