By John D. Horowitz, M.D
Without question, the top priority of every health care provider should be to provide the best possible care to his or her patients in an environment that minimizes the logistical and emotional stresses of receiving that care. Vein care is no exception. Although perceived as a minor health issue, vein care needs to be held to the same responsible standards that every other discipline of medicine is held to. Unfortunately, that is not the case and it seems to be worsening. As re-imbursements decline, we have seen an explosion of providers offering vein care outside of their areas of expertise. Many of these “vein specialists” have no additional training and have not committed their practices to the level of expertise that patients deserve. These practitioners dabble in vein care as an adjunct to their primary discipline and the care their patients receive shows this. This is yet another area where we as physicians have failed our patients. These providers could never pass as vein specialists if there were outpatient credentialing bodies similar to those that govern medical staff privileges in hospitals. The “wild west” is alive and well in vein care and there is little quality control on the horizon. Quite the opposite occurs when industry seduces providers, irrespective of appropriateness, to join the fray and invest in their technology with little regard for quality and outcome. It seems that the “fox is guarding the hen house”, much like what happened in the mortgage crisis 10 years ago. Truthfully, it is not industry’s role to police quality; it is ours as healthcare providers. Centers that commit to specialty training in Phlebology, such as Board Certification, and that commit to quality outcomes analysis for vein care are more likely to provide patients with the best possible vein care. At the Central Florida Vein and Vascular Center, vein care is not a side service line; it is our life’s work. For this very reason, we remain the premier dedicated vein center in central Florida committed to excellence.
Commitment to advanced training and technology
Phlebology as a specialty is a rapidly changing and evolving field. Board certification in Phlebology is a rare achievement that requires special dedication and specialty training to achieve. It represents a level of commitment and accomplishment that will increase the level of care in any vein center. We have the utmost commitment to the most current techniques and technology. This requires constant continuing education and technique refinement on an ongoing basis. We participate in clinical research trials and present our results at local and national society meetings. As technology improves, we are committed to offering our patients the best that industry has to offer. We recently invested in a new, state of the art 1470nm laser to perform endovenous laser therapy. Why? Not because reimbursement was better with the newer technology and not because our older generation lasers were inadequate, but because it was better care for our patients. The 1470 nm laser has been shown to provide better outcomes with less morbidity and increased patient comfort. This technology comes at a high price, one that as a dedicated vein center committed to the finest patient care we undertake naturally. An investment in our patients is an investment in our center.
Commitment to diagnostic excellence:
A dedicated vein center must have the highest standards for its ultrasound diagnostics, the life blood of quality vein care. The venous reflux examination is a highly specific and challenging diagnostic test. It focuses not on thrombosis, although that would be detected if present, but rather on venous physiologic blood flow, the driving force behind venous insufficiency and venous reflux. In a dedicated center, the venous reflux examination routinely takes as long as 60 minutes to perform. Again, this represents a commitment to patient care not found elsewhere. Our sonographers are Registered Vascular Technologists, the highest credentials currently achievable for vascular sonographers. We are accredited as a diagnostic center by the American College of Radiology, the standard of excellence for ultrasound diagnostics. Again, this accreditation process requires significant time, resources, and commitment to standards of care that come naturally to us.
Commitment to a better patient experience:
The patient experience in our dedicated vein practice is unparalleled elsewhere. From their very first phone call to our practice, through their initial consultation, their venous reflux testing, their follow-up office visits, and through their vein therapy, our patients feel the difference; they are in an office like no other. Our entire office staff is knowledgeable in venous disease and fully versed in the processes we use. Our nurses and PA’s are members of the American College of Phlebology. Any patient can ask any staff member about their care process and we are all functioning as an efficient unit, all “on the same page”.
The key to exceptional results is to perform the same procedures over and over again. Our mission for success is to do one thing exceptionally well rather than a multitude of things moderately well. After nearly 10,000 procedures, we have honed our patient care far more than those who merely dabble in vein care could aspire to. Patients can feel the difference when the entire focus is on vein care. Vein patients represent a unique population and in a dedicated center, they are not mixed in with patients that have multiple other issues that pose different resource demands. They are with like patients with similar needs. By limiting our practice to venous disease, we can offer efficient scheduling, minimize confusion and chaos, streamline our care delivery processes to focus exclusively on the patient experience. Since we are committed to the office based practice of Phlebology only, our attention does not get drawn elsewhere; there will never be emergencies that will delay or affect the vein care process. Our behind the scenes focus on efficiency and excellence translates into a patient experience filled with confidence and trust in their therapeutic process. Our patient satisfaction surveys and reviews are a testament to this very point.
Of course, the most important result of dedication to one service line translates into the best outcomes available. We remain committed to offering our patients the best, most complete vein care available, frequently beyond financial constraints. We constantly measure our outcomes and are continuously improving our techniques and processes to achieve the best possible results, safety profile, and overall patient care experience possible.
As a referring physician, the most secure way to ensure that your patients will receive the most comprehensive, safe, and patient centered care with the best outcomes is to refer to a dedicated vein center committed to excellence. Once you do, your patients will not want to go elsewhere.
Mission Statement: “We at the Central Florida Vein and Vascular Center we are dedicated to providing the most advanced, minimally invasive vein care possible in a comfortable, efficient, compassionate, and patient-centered practice”
John D. Horowitz, M.D. is Board Certified in both Vascular Surgery and Phlebology and is uniquely trained to offer patients the most advanced vein care possible. He graduated a member of the AOA Honor Medical Society from Temple University School of Medicine in 1986, from Temple University Hospitals General Surgery Residency in 1991, and from The Ohio State University Hospitals Vascular Surgery Fellowship in 1993. Dr. Horowitz is an active member in many nationally recognized societies including the Southern Vascular, Florida Vascular and Society for Vascular Surgery, as well as the American College of Phlebology. He is nationally renowned for his innovative practice of Minimally Invasive Vein Therapy, has presented his work at many national society meetings and has authored numerous journal articles and book chapters. The Central Florida Vein and Vascular Society is routinely used as a training site for physicians seeking to learn Minimally Invasive Vein Therapy. Dr. Horowitz may be contacted at 407-293-5944 or by visiting www.cfvein.com.