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Insights about research and the biggest issue facing healthcare today

By Admin | October 10, 2016

Dr. William C. Watters III is currently an orthopedic physician with Houston Methodist Hospital. With a career over 20 years old, he has served as president of the North American Spine Society, was a founding member and former chair of the NASS evidence-based guidelines committee, and was a founding member and former chair of the registry development committee.

Dr. Watters spoke to Becker’s Spine Review about the changing healthcare industry. Here are some key takeaways.

On how spine research has changed over time:
“The word is out: You have to do better research. If you look over the last 20 years of research, it's almost embarrassing to look at the stuff I used to quote routinely as being quality papers, when they were basic things we wouldn't even write today.”

On changes due to the NASS's evidence based guidelines committee:
“The other benefit they have had is they identify where the gaps are in our knowledge base are. For example someone will see there is no good research on the effectiveness of back braces and a physician will go, ‘I'll look into that.’ NASS and their research foundation has a separate area where they list all the gaps in knowledge they found in their guidelines, and they're willing to fund research to bridge these gaps.”

On the biggest issue facing the industry:
“One of the reasons for this is our regulatory structure is very cumbersome. This is killing the small incubator companies, which is killing a large amount of our innovation. The big companies have given up innovating, and it falls to the small companies that are sustained with venture capital, which is becoming less and less likely. It's not a good system right now.”

For Dr. Watter’s in-depth answers, read “Dr. William C. Watters III on evolving spine research and the biggest issue facing the industry today” from Becker’s Spine Review.

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