News: South Bend Orthopedics and OSMC to form new company.

South Bend Orthopedics (SBO) and Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Center (OSMC), the two leading orthopedic providers serving North Central Indiana and Southwestern Michigan, will be joining together to form a new company. The new company will be named Ascendant Orthopedic Alliance and will bring together the current seven offices located in South Bend, Elkhart, Mishawaka, Goshen, La Porte, Middlebury and Nappanee.

“The two organizations do very similar work in adjacent communities,” said Don Hammond, CEO of the new company. “As the name suggests, Ascendant will be the preeminent orthopedic resource for patients throughout the region.” 

Ascendant anticipates few visible changes, as all offices will remain open and there are no anticipated staffing changes. By combining the two existing firms, the new company will have the patient base and capital required to support the large investments necessary to provide state-of-the-art services and staffing in the ever-changing healthcare environment.

According to Hammond, “We’ll be able to share our resources, including staff and all 40 physicians, as well as communications among all of our offices, making it more convenient for our patients and our referring physicians. Our focus will continue to better serve our patients and communities in the most cost-effective way.”

Why are we joining together?

We do very similar work, and we'll be even stronger together. 

By combining our firms, we'll have the capital and the patient base to support the investments to offer the most comprehensive orthopedic services in our market area, to keep us on the leading edge of value based orthopedics. The Healthcare reform movement has impacted all areas of healthcare. By becoming a singlestronger organization, it enables us to meet the new demands related to cost management and the provision of comprehensive quality services.

This is good for the community and our patients.  

Our physicians and staff will be able to collaborate with a broader group, sharing experiences and ideas to promote “best practices” among all our providers. 

Although we will be a new organization, not a lot will change from a day-to-day perspective.

We’re committed to the communities we live and work in and to our outstanding staff. All locations will remain open and we anticipate no staffing changes.


Answers to your questions.

Will patients be shifted from one office to another? 

No, everyone can continue to access the most convenient or the most appropriate office for all his or her needs. 

Who will be running the new company?  

There will be an executive board made of physicians from both organizations that will be responsible for governance. Don Hammond will be the CEO, Ginny Schackow will be the COO of St. Joseph County operations and Robin McLaughlin will be the COO of Elkhart County operations. 

What if any impact can be expected in terms of reduced patient cost? 

In the long term, we expect the new and larger organization to be able to manage costs even more effectively so that we can continue to provide the highest levels of care at costs that are in line with national and local standards. 

Where did “Ascendant” come from? 

We like the word “ascendant” because it means preeminence, and we will be the preeminent provider of musculoskeletal services in our current 8-county market area. 

Does this action have a negative impact on the competitive marketplace? 

No, when you look at the 8 counties and the providers in that region we are a mere fraction of the total. It is our desire to build the best musculoskeletal network to best serve the patient’s needs.