Cataract Reimbursements Change In 2020

Medicare has proposed more cuts for Cataract reimbursements for surgeons in 2020, maybe as much as 15% for non-complicated procedures. If you haven’t heard of this yet, read through Review of Ophthalmology’s article titled “Medicare Proposes Another Cut In Cataract Reimbursement”.

Reduced cataract reimbursements, once again, creates a unique situation for surgeons and their practices, having to (a) settle for a reduction in revenue, or (b) figure out a solution to raise their case volume and productivity to make up the difference. We’ve done a little math on our end, and it looks like surgeons will have to add an average of 3-4 cases per surgery day to bring in the same revenue.

Surgical Direct can help make you make up the difference!

Surgical Direct is your cataract outsourcing solution, delivering a service of excellence with care. Our Mobile Cataract Services boost your efficiency standards to new levels.

Here are 3 practical ways that we can help increase your revenue.

1) Satellite Locations

Have you thought about adding a satellite location? More surgery days is probably one of the best ways for you to increase your practice revenue. With satellite locations,  your market reach is multiplied without the heavy investment of opening a second office, time, and the slow climb of establishing your practice in a new market. 

Surgical Direct partners with you in making satellite locations an easy solution for growth. We do all the legwork by connecting you to our OD referral network to get those cataract referrals rolling in.

Plus, we work with the satellite facility so that you can walk in the door, operate with the equipment and supplies you are comfortable with, and walk out. We take care of all the operational details for you.

2) New Technology (with provided backups)

Newer Phaco and Microscope platforms provide extra measures of efficiency and safety for every patient. Harder cataracts are removed easier, in less time, with better post-op results (generally speaking, but there’s also science behind that statement).

Surgical Direct gives you the opportunity to upgrade your Phaco and Microscope platforms when you want to without spending the capital, which gives you the opportunity to increase your efficiency right now, instead of waiting for funds to become available.

We also provide backup machines for every surgery day, so equipment delays are a non-issue and the day can continue to flow. No more equipment issue delays.

3) Surgery Add-On Options Made Easy

Cases that would be categorized as “Complicated” for reimbursement, generally require different inventory and support than your average case. When it comes to planned surgical Add-on options that can increase your reimbursement rates, Surgical Direct has you covered! Your office requests it, we provide it. This includes Hydrus Microstent systems, iStent inject systems, Omni Glaucoma Systems, and more.

When it comes to the unexpected case scenarios, Surgical Direct Coordinators come prepared for all un-expected case scenarios as well, stocking ample backup supplies like Iris Rings/Hooks, CTRs, Vits, and extra Viscoelastics for the day.

In short, Surgical Direct is here for you, determined to be your partner in all your cataract surgery needs and help you take your practice to the next level.

To learn more about our services, click through below to learn more or contact us directly for in-depth details.

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3 Ways To Prepare for The Baby Boomer Cataract Influx

The Baby Boomer generation is currently within range for cataracts, which right now is estimated to be 76 million people in the US between the ages of 55-75. According to studies, the average age of cataract surgery patients today is 60.  This means that we are nearing (if not already in) history’s busiest years in Ophthalmology.

On top of these stats, articles published by Mayo Clinic News Network,, and Review of Ophthalmology all write of Boomers trending to opt-in for cataract surgery at earlier ages than previous generations. It is no wonder, as increases in IOL technology, phaco technology, and newly approved procedural options are producing better refractive outcomes. Cataract surgery is now more convenient, has better outcomes, and is less strenuous on patients than ever.

Big improvements in vision + minimally invasive procedure + 98% success rate = Baby Boomer Cataract Influx! Why not?

3 Ways To Prepare For The Baby Boomer Cataract Influx

1 ) Streamline Your Operational Structure – Maximize your Efficiency

The influx of Baby Boomer cataract surgery means that Ophthalmologists will be in high demand, and cataract surgery will be at all-time-high numbers. This means that it’s really important to prepare your facility, staff, and operational structure for an increase in patients. More surgeries mean longer days, so streamlining your operational structure will be essential to ensure that your facility is ready to perform more surgeries in as little time as safely possible.

How do you do this? Organizing an “Eye Team” is one of the best ways to increase efficiency. The eye team is made up of circulating nurses, scrubs, and support staff that are trained and know what to do in their specific roles. From room turnover, sterilization processing, and intra-op steps and norms, having a trained, experienced, and designated team is one of the best ways to increase speed while remaining safe.

2) Acquire the Latest Technology – Increase Safety + Efficiency

New Phaco and Microscope technology improve the surgical efficiency of the surgeon while increasing safety for the patients. The surgeon is able to cut, asperate, and remove the cataract faster and safer (in a more controlled intraocular environment)  with new Phaco technology than with old technology. New microscope technology increases the surgeon’s view dramatically, giving them more control over the surgery while increasing safety for the patient. Both of these areas can help reduce the intra-op time of each case, and increase the day’s efficiency while retaining (or even increasing) safety standards.

3) Optimize Your Inventory Management Systems – Reduce the Back-End Hours

More cases mean more supplies. More supplies mean more purchase orders to process, organize, stock, pull and reorder after surgery. For anyone who has handled eye surgery inventory, you already know how much work is entailed in this department. With an influx of cases, this means an increase in back-end hours. It’s important to optimize your inventory systems to make sure you fine-tune your operations to eliminate lag as much as possible.

These above 3 tasks to streamline your cataract systems are easier said than done. But we have good news!

Surgical Direct fits the bill in each of these areas.

1) Surgical Direct helps streamline your operational structure.

At Surgical Direct, we acclimate to your environment and become part of the team. Our experienced surgical coordinators not only deliver the equipment and supplies but offer technical assistance and support on every cataract case in your OR. This raises the overall ‘procedure knowledge’ in the room, and can increase the day’s efficiency.

2) Surgical Direct provides the latest cataract technology at no upfront cost.

Cataract Technology is expensive. In fact, predicts that the Cataract Surgery Device Market will surpass $8.5B by 2024.  This particular area can be the most challenging area for surgical facilities because of the capital. Surgical Direct’s Mobile Cataract Service provides the latest technology in Phaco, Ophthalmic Microscope and IOL to your OR with no capital expenditure.

3) Surgical Direct provides massive inventory support, eliminating your inventory for the majority of eye case supplies on-site.

Along with our technology provisions, we provide wide/customizable selections in eye case inventory for your cases (except drugs). This eliminates the need for your facility to carry these items and maintain inventory, freeing you and your staff for more important work.

Surgical Direct is here to help streamline your cataract operations to achieve the most efficient, safe, and cost-effective solution possible. Partner with Surgical Direct today and together we can provide the best in cataract care to your patients and community.

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Cataract Coordinators Enhance Your OR

For every surgery with Surgical Direct’s Mobile Cataract Service, we provide a surgical coordinator. Having experienced, aware, cordial, and supportive help in the OR during surgery can make a big difference in the efficiency of surgery day.  If you are part of a surgical team (or you are an Ophthalmologist), chances are, you have experienced a day (or many) when other members of the OR team on eye day have limited experience in cataract surgery. This is a common occurrence (to no one’s fault) based on how frequent an MD will bring cases to the facility, OR staff turnover, vacations, sick days, and more. Even if a scrub nurse is consistently ‘scrubbing’ eyes, it can take months for familiarity to set in, knowing the instruments by name, and the different dynamics of the case. Even at that point, knowing the equipment well enough to troubleshoot isn’t even on their radar.

From our experience, it’s actually the status-quo that the many of support staff teams in an OR have limited experience with cataract surgery unless they’ve been working directly with eyes for years. Even with years of experience, it’s not common knowledge for nurses to know the ins-and-outs of the procedure to the point where they are preemptively prepared for a lens change, extra viscoelastic, or a Vit. Simply because they don’t need to know that information.

Cataract Coordinators Enhance Your OR

In no way do we intend to diminish the hard-working heroes of each and every OR we step into. The nursing and scrub staffs that we encounter daily are exceptionally hardworking and smart individuals, most having a wealth of surgical knowledge far greater than we possess at Surgical Direct. We honestly believe that!

The only difference (our unique advantage point) is that the Surgical Coordinators at Surgical Direct assist surgeons and staff with cataract surgery every single day.  It’s through routine, repetition, and our highly-intensive training program, that our surgical coordinators are equipped to provide the best cataract surgery support available.

Cataract Surgery Is What We Know.

Our coordinators are trained in:

  • Phaco & Microscope Technology (annually, directly with the manufacturers)
  • Equipment Failure and Troubleshooting
  • IOL, Instrumentation, & Case Supplies (annually, directly with the manufacturers)
  • Anatomy of the Eye
  • Phaco Dynamics (Procedure & Cataract Surgery Techniques)
  • Case Supply Management
  • OR Protocols (annually)
  • Workplace Safety (annually)
  • Sterile Field Protocol (annually)
  • And more

We don’t walk into the OR with a chip on our shoulder, acting like we know it all. We don’t operate that way. But we do know cataracts. We know surgical techniques. We learn doctor preferences quickly. We work hard to be punctual, prepared, pre-emptive, and positive.

We’ve found that arming our coordinators with knowledge equips them to better serve any OR team (no matter their experience level), any surgeon, in any OR. Their can-do attitudes and helpful mindsets can increase eye team efficiency dramatically, not to mention an increase in safety for the patients and ease-of-mind for the surgeon from day 1.

Experience our services first-hand by singing up for a free demo today!

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5 Ways to Keep Cataract Surgeons Happy

As a Mobile Cataract Service, Surgical Direct is in the business of providing everything we can to our surgeons, ensuring that they are happy. It may seem arbitrary to bring up, but did you know that a happy cataract surgeon is a better cataract surgeon? Mood is a big factor of our performance in almost every area of life. Feeling comfortable, supported, and at ease (knowing that the details of the day have been thought through and proper preparations have followed) helps the surgeon perform better surgery. Less stress = Better Outcomes. So the question then stands, how do you keep your cataract surgeon happy?

5 ways to take care of your Cataract Surgeon.

1) New Equipment

New Cataract Technology (for the most part) will always make the surgeon happy. Of course, there are surgeons out there that prefer to stick with equipment that they’ve grown accustomed to. But in our experience, even if they are loyal to an older phaco platform, it’s only because they haven’t been able to try the newer technology yet. Sometimes they know that the hospital isn’t going to invest for them, so they train themselves to be content with what they have. But if we took a pole, close to 80% would opt to try the new equipment if given an opportunity. From our experience, the surgeon’s mood improves when they finally get the equipment they’ve heard about and have wanted to try. One of the best parts about a partnership with Surgical Direct is that your surgeon can upgrade to the latest cataract technology on the market without spending any hospital /ASC capital.

2) Reduced Turnover Times

Surgeons are busy individuals. Lag time in the OR can infuriate them (trust us…we know). Finding ways to reduce the in-between case turnover time will lighten their mood dramatically. Of course, each surgeon will have his or her own expectation of how long a turn-over ‘should’ take. We understand that sometimes, you can only turn-over so fast given the circumstances of hospital regulations, patient arrivals, and instrument prep. What we’ve found at Surgical Direct, is that there are always ways to preemptively prepare for a smoother day, no matter what obstacles may lie in your path. We make it our business to work with the OR team and the surgeon, streamlining the process to help the day run as smooth as possible.

3) Optimal Number of Cases

This next one will always vary based on the surgeon. Some surgeons like to load up the day with cases, while others only like a certain number and no more. Finding that happy balance is important for the mood of the surgeon on surgery day. Case volume is largely in the hands of the surgeon and their scheduling office, but it does help to know the “number” that each surgeon prefers and do what can be done to accommodate them. Knowing this can help the support team adjust. For example, if you have a surgeon that prefers 8 cases a day, but his office scheduled 10, most likely, the surgeon will be somewhat frustrated that the day will be longer than preferred. This gives us a chance to think creatively on how we can speed up the day and use an “all-hands-on-deck” mentality to speed up turnover, patient prep, etc. Trust us, your surgeon will notice and will appreciate the effort.

In the case of the surgeon not having enough cases (especially in Satellite Surgery Programs), Surgical Direct can connect your surgeon with more referring ODs within our referral network. This helps ensure that the surgeon’s trip into town will be more beneficial and productive, both for them and their patients.

4) Consistent / ‘PRO’ Eye Team

Having a consistent team on eye day is important. At Surgical Direct, we’ve learned that the surgeon is more comfortable and performs better surgery if familiar faces are in the OR. Walking into the OR full of people they don’t recognize and have no history with can put them on edge because they don’t know if they can trust you. That’s why consistently keeping the same circulators, scrubs, CRNA’s, and surgical coordinators in the room breed an environment of trust with the surgeon. The more you work with an individual, the more you know what to expect, how to prepare, and understand likes and dislikes. This is why, we do our part to designate our surgical coordinators to certain accounts.

Additionally, cataract surgeons can instantly recognize inexperience. Inexperience in the room can make a surgeon uneasy, depending on the surgeon’s personality. This is why it’s important to have your ‘Pro’ team of experience in the room as much as possible, until newer talent is comfortable and confident in their roles. At SDI, our surgical coordinators will never step foot into an OR alone until they’ve completed a 90day training period, and have proven that they are ready and capable to take on a surgery day.

5) Reduce Unnecessary Details for the Surgeon

Finally, the 5th way to keep your Cataract Surgeon happy is to take as much off their plate as is allowed (or possible). Surgeon’s have many details and aspects of the surgery on their mind at all times. It’s important for them to be focused on these details, as they are solely responsible for them:  like specific patient requirements and conditions, Lens calculations, ocular settings etc. This weighs heavy on them and they rely on their training to make the best decision possible. At Surgical Direct, we look for creative ways to take off their plate any other details that we can. This helps them focus on each case, helping them become better surgeons, and ultimately keeping them happy. The ‘details’ will be different for every surgeon. Sometimes just asking how we can make their day easier is the best place to start. Whatever way we can alleviate non-crucial details for them, will enable them to perform better surgery.

From our experience, these 5 practical ways create a successful and enjoyable work environment for cataract surgeons. We are committed to providing the best Mobile Cataract Service available to our partners.

If when reading this post, you felt that your OR would benefit from our services, we want to partner with you! For a complete listing of our services and what we provide, Click here.

We are always ready to talk about your needs. Call us toll-free today for instant info.

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Dedicated Service = Surgical Success

Taking care of all the details, big & small.

At Surgical Direct Inc, we are dedicated to the mindset of continually improving our services. It’s the fabric of our company culture to practice excellent customer service and support. From ensuring that the equipment arrives at your facility on-time, meticulously gathering all case supplies needed for the day, to providing multifaceted OR support. Our team is trained to deliver the best, and it’s in the DNA of our company culture to deliver the gold standard of service to our partners.

The scope of dedicated service benefits.

Surgical Direct delivers the latest Cataract Technology available on the market directly to your OR on the day that you need it. The days of keeping up the industries latest trends by purchasing new equipment every few years is over. Free up storage. Lose expensive maintenance plans and unexpected equipment failure issues.  We make Cataract Surgery a viable and profitable option in any OR, no matter your capital structure.

We want to give you an exhaustive list of the ‘details’ that we oversee when you partner with Surgical Direct Inc. Our team takes much of the heavy lifting in your Cataract Surgery operational details. We are convinced that you’ll begin to see the incredible value that our services provide to your OR and community. 

  • Phaco Machines – The latest machines available on the market from top brands like Alcon, J&J, and B+L. Does the surgeon want to switch platforms? No problem! Upgrade without spending a dollar of capital. Included with our services is all the handpieces you’ll need for the day’s volume of cases. Plus, we are prepared with backups.
  • Microscopes – Cutting edge ophthalmic microscopes that put the surgeon at ease during surgery with crystal clear vision and focus. From brands like Alcon, Zeiss, and Leica, our fleet of microscopes are ready for surgery.
  • Intraocular Lens Implants – No matter the brand, no matter the style, if the patient needs a lens…we provide it. We compile custom lens consignment carts that we roll into your facility with us to ensure if the surgeon needs a backup or changes his lens diopter, we have it. Not only that, but we coordinate directly with the physician’s office ahead of time to ensure we have everything they need on surgery day, we also communicate with your team to make sure every detail is covered. We also handle all ordering, reordering, restocking, returns, and all the paperwork associated with lenses. Quite the load off!
  • Instrumentation – We help coordinate with new surgeons / new facilities that need assistance with instrumentation. Specific instruments, their quantity, and availability on surgery day plays a massive role in how smoothly the surgery day will go.
  • Case Supplies – We have the ability to provide literally everything needed during the case when it comes to supplies (except prescription drugs). Blades, drapes, cannulas, packs, table covers, BSS, tips, sleeves, viscoelastics, lens cartridges, malyugin rings, capsular tension rings, iris hooks….and more! Specialized and tailored supply lists for each surgeon is going to be unique. This includes standard supplies as well as backup supplies. Our standard is to have everything the surgeon might need (and some) so that we are prepared for any unexpected circumstances. Plus, this alleviates the need to stock, reorder, restock, and manage cataract case supply inventory.
  • Technical and Present Support for EVERY case – Every case with Surgical Direct Inc, one our highly trained surgical coordinators is assigned to your day. Our 90-day training program rigorously prepares them with knowledge and know-how on what to do in any situation. We arrive early with the equipment, set up the room, prime and check the machines, pass off instruments and supplies for prep, and are in the room for every case of the day. We do everything from open sterile fields, adjust settings for the surgeon, and help with turnover. They might even walk in with donuts for the staff from time to time…. just because. 😉 Our coordinators become a vital part of your team on eye day, looking for opportunities to serve the surgeon and room staff any way they can.

Our goal is to deliver exceptional value to every case. We have intentionally developed strategies and put methods in place for the sole benefit of our customers. Why? Because the better we can serve our customers (OR staff and surgeons) the better patient care we can provide the patients together.  Smoother and more efficient surgery means better outcomes. That is what has driven Surgical Direct Inc forward every year.

Are you ready to access this value in your OR? We are ready to partner with you.

Give us a call today! Let’s talk through your specific surgical situation and how we can increase productivity and stability for your cataract day.

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Mobile YAG & SLT Lasers

The efficiency of surgical procedures in today’s Ophthalmic landscape is an always-increasing priority for surgeons and facilities alike. For most Ophthalmologists, time is very valuable, and we understand the need to increase surgical efficiency as much as possible without decreasing patient care and optimal outcomes. Our goal at Surgical Direct Inc has always been to creatively problem solve and create the paths of least resistance for your eye practice. We create options and eliminate obstacles. In many cases, it makes sense for an Ophthalmologist to add YAG or SLT procedures to a surgery day, especially in a satellite surgery location or a rural area. Your best option is a Mobile YAG & SLT Laser service like ours. 

Mobile YAG & SLT Laser procedures add efficiency boosts to your satellite practice.

If you are reading this post and are unfamiliar with YAG and SLT lasers, allow us to shed some light for you.

1) Mobile YAG Laser

A YAG laser is used primarily for 2 procedures; a Capsulotomy, and an Iridotomy. A YAG Capsulotomy is a special laser treatment used to improve your vision after cataract surgery. It is a simple, commonly performed procedure which is very safe. In some patients, after cataract surgery has been performed, the remaining capsule becomes thick and hazy. This can occur anywhere from a few months to a few years after surgery. The YAG laser is used to make small holes in the capsule, which in effect causes the capsule to return to its original thickness and removes the haziness. A YAG Iridotomy is a glaucoma treatment procedure which involves creating a tiny opening with the laser in the peripheral iris, allowing aqueous fluid to flow from behind the iris directly to the anterior chamber of the eye.

Adding YAG Capsulotomy or Iridotomy cases onto your cataract day can reduce your OR days by including both cataracts and YAGs in the same day. Putting more procedures onto 1 day can reduce the need for multiple smaller surgery days, which makes your surgery days more profitable, and frees up more days in your month. If you are operating in satellite locations, this potentially reduces the number of trips a surgeon will need to make to the area, and at the same time increases efficiency and profitability of each trip. And since YAG cases typically only take a few minutes, this doesn’t prolong the day by much, but it does increase revenue!

2) Mobile SLT Laser

Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) is primarily an in-office procedure that reduces intraocular pressure in patients with glaucoma. The laser is applied through a special contact lens to the drainage system of the eye where it stimulates a biochemical change that improves the outflow of fluid from the eye.

Similarly to YAGs, any surgeon that works with Surgical Direct also has the option to add SLT procedures to their surgery days if the surgeon wishes to do so. Similar to YAG procedures, SLT laser procedures are generally quick and effective in treating glaucoma patients and can boost the day’s overall revenue if added on.

In-office Laser Services.

Surgical Direct Inc gives you the ability to reserve our YAG & SLT lasers separate from your surgical days as well. For Ophthalmic practices that do not have YAG or SLT lasers in office, we provide laser setup and support directly to your office. Our mission is to cater to your needs in this area, eliminating your need to purchase and maintain equipment, while providing high-quality laser treatments for your patients, right in your office.

Surgical Direct Inc provides high-quality lasers.

Surgical Direct provides high-quality Zeiss YAG Lasers and Lumenis SLT Lasers, each accompanied by our high-quality slit lamps, lenses, and height-adjustable tables. These lasers are state-of-the-art, easy to use, and are manufacture maintained. Included in our YAG and SLT services is an optional in-room technician that can assist the surgeon in settings, adjustments, and exposure read-outs.

Our overall goal at Surgical Direct is to partner with ophthalmologists and surgical facilities to help your vision become a reality. We are flexible and supportive to your schedule and needs!

To inquire about our mobile YAG & SLT laser programs, please contact us today.

Surgical Direct Inc is a partner that you can trust and depend on!

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Preparing for Cataract Equipement Failure

Cataract Equipment failure can be a big source of frustration in your OR on surgery day, bringing the potential for surgery cancellations, revenue loss, and unhappy patients and surgeons. Phaco Machines, Phaco Handpieces, Microscopes, and Instruments all play vital roles in surgery and all have the potential for failure. Honestly, it’s inevitable that your OR will experience it at some point. Even if the smallest component of any of the prior mentioned equipment is not fully functional, it can really put a damper on the day.

How do you prepare, making sure that equipment failure does not hinder your surgery day and cause delays or cancellations?

4 ways to be ready for Cataract Equipment Failure.

1) Acquire basic knowledge of how the equipment works.

One of the most valuable tools in dealing with equipment failure is diagnosing the problem.  Knowing what might be causing the issue will help you determine whether it’s a simple issue (ie the tubing line detached from the handpiece or the phaco tip is loose), or a deeper problem (ie the software is malfunctioning). Valuable knowledge of the equipment and how it works can be the difference between a 2 min delay and an entire day of cancellations.

By partnering with Surgical Direct Inc, the pressure on your staff is eliminated! Our knowledgeable and pro-active surgical coordinators play an active role in your OR. Each team member of Surgical Direct Inc. is skilled at resolving equipment failure issues, from diagnosis to solution, to keep the day moving as swiftly as possible.

2) Have backups available and in a designated location.

Having backup supplies and equipment is important to ensure that if an issue arises that cannot be diagnosed and addressed, then backup equipment is available to be substituted for the day. For small items like phaco-tips, tubing packs, and microscope light bulbs, this is a no-brainer. Even having extra peel-packed supplies like lens loaders, and backup instruments in case of contamination is smart. These backup supplies should be located in a designated location in the room for quick access. To take it a step further, having a backup Phaco machine and extra handpieces available (sterilized and ready) on site adds extra confidence to the staff in case deeper technical issues arise.

A partnership with Surgical Direct, means you do not need to purchase or manage stocking backup supplies or equipment. We provide ample amounts of disposable backups as well as equipment backups for every surgery day that you partner with us.

3) Have technical support contact info readily available.

There are times when equipment will fail, and you will not be able to diagnose what’s happening in a timely fashion. If within a few minutes, you cannot decipher what is happening, it’s a good idea to call technical support to try to find answers quickly. Often this contact may be the manufacturer sales representative, etc. Having their contact information close at hand and accessible in order to gain insight quickly can either shed light on a simple solution or be the deciding factor that backup equipment needs to be pulled into the room.

The point is to minimize case downtime as much as possible, and a partnership with Surgical Direct Inc., we provide professional surgical coordinators that will often be able to diagnose and resolve the issue. If the issue constitutes a manufacture service call, our backup equipment is ready to fill in. Additionally, we have excellent relationships with the manufacture vendors and reps and have their contact info ready in case additional support is needed.

4) Have a plan and inform the team.

A detailed plan of action that your surgical team is familiar with will help ensure swift resolve on what to do in case of cataract equipment failure. Training and communication on where backup supplies are kept, general knowledge of instrumentation and terminology, and a contingency plan will help keep everyone on the same page. This will also ease the “panic mode” that can set in when the unexpected happens, keeping everyone calm and on task.

Experience the peace of mind that partnering with Surgical Direct provides, by our customer-centric culture that continually raises the standard of excellent service will help make your cataract program thrive.

Equipment failures happen. We are prepared for the unexpected and that makes the difference when it comes to equipment failures. Partnering with Surgical Direct is the most efficient way for your facility to optimize in this area. Think of the cost savings of supplying backup supplies. Think of the savings on repair costs! Our team provides a deeper level of knowledge, experience, and assurance to the OR that no matter what happens, we help streamline your cataract days successfully and professionally.

Want to know more about Surgical Direct and our services? Check out Why a Cataract Outsourcing Partnership Makes Sense in 2019 to see how Surgical Direct can position your cataract program for growth.

Surgical Direct Inc is a partner that you can trust and depend on!

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Adding a Second OR For Cataracts

In the world of Cataract Surgery, safety is the #1 priority of all OR staff and surgeons during eye-day. In our 20+ years of experience in offering premium Mobile Cataract Services, we’ve realized that a very close #2 priority on eye day is efficiency. Everyone involved (surgeon, staff, and patients) are busy people with things to do, places to go, and people to *see (no pun intended). This makes surgical efficiency a high-priority for cataracts, and one of the best ways to increase your efficiency is adding a second room. However, for many, there are obstacles in the way of achieving the next level of efficiency, and Surgical Direct can make a 2nd room service possible for you and your community.

We have learned the increasing value a surgeon places on a streamlined 2nd room operation in ophthalmology, and by inviting Surgical Direct into your picture, together we can accomplish a larger reach of service to your community. The results are clear! Surgeons are pleased, your staff is supported, and now your facility is maximizing available OR time without costing you more capital.

Adding a Second OR for Cataracts is easy with Surgical Direct.


The beauty of partnering with Surgical Direct’s Mobile Cataract Service is that limitations are reduced dramatically and possibilities and options are increased.

 1) We provide double the equipment.

Since the facility no longer needs to purchase Phaco machines, microscopes, and hand-pieces, confining your surgeon to one room is no longer an issue. On 2 room days, we provide all the equipment required for 2 rooms to operate safely and efficiently. This saves the facility upwards of 6 figures in capital investment, maintenance, repairs, and other unexpected costs.

2) We provide double the support.

Having enough equipment to have 2 rooms running doesn’t always make the day more efficient. The team of people that work in the room is what does! Having the right amount of support staff is vital to keep the day moving efficiently. That’s why we provide 1 technician per room on 2 room days. This increases the manpower, technical support, and teamwork in each room so that those 8-15 minutes cases stay 8-15 minutes. We also help with turnover, so that the surgeon can bounce between rooms without waiting. A day that stays on schedule, is a GOOD day!

3) We provide double the supplies.

2 room days typically means a lot of cases. A lot of cases means a lot of supplies. No matter the surgeon and his supply preferences, 12-20 cases in one day calls for a large amount of inventory. Surgical Direct provides all inventory needs for your cataract cases (except for meds). For 2 room days, we fill our cargo vans (sometimes to the roof) with equipment and supplies for a single 2 room day. Think of the shelf space you’ll be saving. Think of the time you’ll be saving in inventory if you didn’t have to order, receive, unpack, and shelf all of that inventory every time the surgeon is scheduled. And since we are on the subject of inventory, we must mention lenses. If the surgeon is doing (eg) 15 cases, you’ll also need about 45 lenses (primary + 2 backup) ready and accounted for before the day starts. With Surgical Direct as a part of your team, you don’t stock case supplies or manage lens consignments. We bring it all with us morning of, and at the end of the day, take all the excess back with us.

So here’s the recap.

Surgical Direct is your partner for all cataract surgical needs for 1 or 2 room days. We provide the latest ophthalmic technology available directly to your OR on surgery day including Phaco machines, microscopes, disposables, lenses, and highly-trained technical support. Surgical Direct is the solution you’ve been looking for to streamline your surgical and operational efficiency. Don’t just take our word for it, read through our testimonials and hear it from our customers.

Interested in finding out more?

Give us a call today at 1-800-346-0544 or email us at

We also offer a Free Demo Day where you can evaluate our services for a day for FREE.

Not in the market for cataract services? Maybe you know someone in your network of surgeons, hospitals, or ASC’s that does. We love referrals!

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3 Vital Components for a Smooth Eye Day

Here at Surgical Direct, we’ve been supporting OR facilities and Ophthalmologists achieve smoother (more efficient) surgery days for nearly 20 years. We’ve picked up a few methods, routines, and systems along the way that can help refine the operations of a cataract surgery day, to be as smooth as possible. Of course, every facility will have its own methods and preferred ways of doing things, and we are always supportive and collaborative. Likewise, surgeons are always in command of the room and have the ultimate say on how things will go. That being said, cataract surgery (and the overall motion of the day) is going to look slightly different in every facility. But there are 3 things that we’ve come to firmly believe in that are the basis a smooth cataract day, no matter the facility.

Here are the 3 absolute necessities for a smooth cataract surgery day. 

1) Reliable, State-of-the-art Equipment


There is nothing more frustrating (for staff, surgeon, and patient) than preparing for a big surgery day, only to be met with equipment failures. When equipment fails to work properly, not only does it put the patient at risk (which is the most important factor), but it has the potential to cause unwanted stress over a loss in monthly revenue, rescheduling cases, calling in repairs with service reps, and the unexpected repair costs. When you partner with Surgical Direct,  you significantly lower your risk of letting equipment failure ruin your surgery day. Why? Because at Surgical Direct, we are committed to providing state of the art equipment that works every time. Our equipment is manufacture maintained and surgery ready at all times, but just in case, we also supply backup machines to our accounts on surgery day. If any emergency issue should arise during the day with our equipment (even with our backup equipment), we are ready to run what’s needed to your site as soon as possible to avoid cancellations. You never have to worry about aging equipment again! Plus, you never have to pay for repairs again on cataract equipment.

2) All the right supplies

Having the right supplies ready and organized for each case is vital for the day to run smoothly. Forgetting to pull a certain supply for that special case can slow the case down, which slows your day down. Or there is always the event that your inventory shipment didn’t make it in time and you are low on a needed item. Having all the supplies (included those unexpected backup supplies and instruments) is crucial for a smooth day. When you partner with Surgical Direct,  we take care of all case supplies (including special supplies and lenses) for each of your cases. We always pack extra for the day, in case of contaminations. Plus our technicians are trained to know what the surgeon might need in certain scenarios, and they will be ready to produce that item that no one else in the room has heard of when the doctor requests it.

3) Co-ordinated Teamwork & Turn-over

Teamwork makes the dream work! What makes for a well-oiled cataract surgery machine is everyone in the room knowing their role, doing it well, and keeping a “patient-first” mindset. Who does what during turnover? Do you have enough hands in the room to open sterile supplies, position the bed, prime the machine, and adjust the doctor’s settings? When you partner with Surgical Direct,  you are given a seasoned and knowledgable technician in your room. Our techs are trained to be team players, helping the day move along however they can. From opening sterile supplies, cleaning handpieces, adjusting the doctor’s settings for him, taking out the trash, producing one-off supplies the doctor is asking for, and much more…..our technicians are what make Surgical Direct shine!

Surgical Direct provides a mobile cataract service that saves you time, money, space, and stress.

It really is simple. Surgical Direct will provide the latest cataract equipment to your facility when you need it (just for surgery day – even for 2 rooms days) so you don’t have to spend your capital on cataract equipment. Our equipment is manufacture maintained and routinely serviced with the same service contracts you would have if it were in your facility. We always provide a backup machine in case of equipment failure (because it does happen), and when it does, we pay for the repairs. We provide adequate handpiece volume for your surgery day caseload so surgeries can move along at a normal pace (even with today’s sterilization standards). We provide all the inventory you’ll need for surgery…including case supplies (drapes, blades, cannulas, viscoelastics, etc), instruments, lenses, and those rarely used backup supplies (excluding pre and post-op meds). And all of this comes at a per-case price that is only a percentage of your facility’s cataract reimbursement. OH, and did we mention no long-term contracts?

2019 is the year that you can upgrade your equipment without spending a dollar of capital and save money and time on inventory management. Read more about Why Cataract Outsourcing Makes Sense in 2019

Call us anytime with your questions! Or you can try our services first hand for FREE. Sign up for our Free Demo Day and experience Surgical Direct first hand at no charge. (see demo day page for full details).


How much are cataracts really costing you?

When purchasing cataract equipment (phaco machines and ophthalmic microscopes), not only do you have to take into consideration the initial cost but also the long-term expense it will take to keep your equipment maintained and surgery-ready. On top of that, cataract costs can go even deeper into your profit margins when managing your own inventory (case supplies, lenses, and special instruments like tonic markers and CTR inserters). Did you know that partnering with Surgical Direct can dramatically lower how much cataracts cost your facility?  What is the real cost of owning cataract equipment? Let us break it down for you…

What’s the real cost of owning cataract equipment and managing your own supplies?

1) Initial Capital

Easily the highest expense of owning cataract equipment is purchasing it. Purchasing cataract equipment (phaco machines, handpieces, and microscopes) can easily cost your facility over 6 figures in capital expenditure to be ready to facilitate cataract surgery (and if you are considering having 2 rooms operational for cataracts, double that figure). That’s no small dent. But the real challenge in the ophthalmic specialty is keeping up with how quickly new technology is released. Software upgrades typically are released annually which cost you to upgrade. On average, manufacturers release new phaco platforms every 7-10 years, meaning that you may need to re-invest in new technology on that timeframe. Ophthalmology is one of the most rapidly advanced specialties in the medical field.

2) Repairs and Preventative Maintenance

If you purchase cataract equipment for your facility, you must take into consideration the cost of maintaining your equipment. Phaco machine service contracts with manufacturers can cost an average of 5-7k per year (in a multiple year contract). And that’s just 1 phaco machine PM plan. Now let’s talk about repairs. Here’s a list of the most common phaco issues concerning repairs:

  • Phaco Foot Switch (3-5k)
  • Phaco handpiece failures (2-4k)
  • IV pole malfunctions (2-4k)
  • Fluidics hardware malfunctions (3k+)

These are average prices and the most common issues you’ll see from our experience. While still on the topic of phaco repairs, we also have to mention the loss of business and costs that correlate if your surgery day is halted or canceled by equipment failure. Not only will your facility lose revenue due to canceling surgery, but it’s a major hassle to reschedule patients, coordinate special service calls, and so on. 

3) Case Supply Waste, Lens Management, & Shipping Costs

If you manage your own case supply inventory at your facility, you’ll know that there is almost always some percentage of loss you’ll experience (from expirations to contaminations to damages). With cataract supplies, you may also know that there are specialty items necessary to have on hand just in case the surgeon might need them. Items like Capsular Tension Rings, Malyugin Rings, Iris Hooks, and Vitrectors (just to name a few) are items that need to be available if the surgeon asks for them. Some of these items are so rarely used, that they often expire on your shelf before they are used, which is a loss in your inventory. And of course, because of the nature of these supplies, they tend to be the most expensive of the cataract case supplies that you’ll order.

Managing your own lens consignments can cost you a significant amount of time and money between processing orders and reorders, shipping charges, special orders, restocking, etc. We also cannot forget to mention all the shipping costs that you will pay for all inventory items including lenses, regular supplies, overnight charges for last minute orders, and instrument repairs. Shipping costs on supplies and lenses can be significant over time.

4) Time & Space

Think for a moment of all the time that’s invested in preparing for cataract day. Ordering inventory, stocking supplies, pulling case supplies for surgery, managing multiple vendor PO’s, custom ordering specialty lenses, reordering and restocking used lenses; the list goes on…and that’s just for a normal day when nothing goes wrong! What about when a machine goes down? Patients have to be rescheduled and surgery needs to be re-coordinated with the surgeon. If transportation is involved for patients, that needs to be re-arranged. Service calls with the manufacturer need to be coordinated, arranged, invoiced, and paid. All of this is time that you (or someone on your staff) is taking out of their week to manage. When it comes to space, many surgical locations are limited in storage space. Cataract equipment and case supplies can eat up 200-400 sq ft of your precious storage space.

Surgical Direct provides a mobile cataract service that saves you time, money, space, and stress.

It really is simple. Surgical Direct will provide the latest cataract equipment to your facility when you need it (just for surgery day – even for 2 rooms days) so you don’t have to spend your capital on cataract equipment. Our equipment is manufacture maintained and routinely serviced with the same service contracts you would have if it were in your facility. We always provide a backup machine in case of equipment failure (because it does happen), and when it does, we pay for the repairs. We provide adequate handpiece volume for your surgery day caseload so surgeries can move along at a normal pace (even with today’s sterilization standards). We provide all the inventory you’ll need for surgery…including case supplies (drapes, blades, cannulas, viscoelastics, etc), instruments, lenses, and those rarely used backup supplies (excluding pre and post-op meds). And all of this comes at a per-case price that is only a percentage of your facility’s cataract reimbursement. OH, and did we mention no long-term contracts?

2019 is the year that you can upgrade your equipment without spending a dollar in capital and save money and time on inventory management.

Check out our post about 5 Headaches Eliminated with Mobile Cataract Services to see how Surgical Direct can help alleviate your cataract surgery woes.

Call us anytime with your questions! Or you can try our services first hand for FREE. Sign up for our Free Demo Day and experience Surgical Direct first hand at no charge. (see demo day page for full details).