The TriStar Centennial Advanced Joint Replacement Institute (AJRI), specifically designed to deliver outstanding clinical outcomes and an exceptional patient experience, welcomed its first patient in August.

The new $96 million, 50,000-square-foot "hospital within a hospital" specialty orthopedic center is located on the eighth floor of TriStar Centennial Medical Center. AJRI includes 18 pre-op areas, 10 surgical suites, 17 PACU bays for recovery, a learning center and bio skills lab, state-of-the-art central sterile processing area, vendor storage, and 29 dedicated med-surg beds one floor below used solely for joint replacement patients.

Michael Christie, MD, co-founder of Southern Joint Replacement Institute whose career and experience spans more than 30 years was a driving force behind the new center.

"There has been a tremendous amount of planning and thoughtfulness behind the development of the Advanced Joint Replacement Institute, and central to every aspect was the care of our patients," said Dr. Christie. "Our focus was to ensure a surgical environment equipped with the most sophisticated technology to provide surgeons the optimum ability to deliver the best possible outcomes for patients. Equally important was to create an overall atmosphere that ensured an outstanding patient experience."

According to Dr. Christie, the center's design was driven by a patient-centric focus on quality, comfort and care. The comfort of family members also was given careful consideration, resulting in a comfortable waiting area featuring concierge service and other amenities.

Most importantly, behind all the sophistication of the new center stands a set of evidence-based protocols for performing joint replacement surgeries that are proven to deliver remarkable results. Those protocols include innovations in anesthesia delivery, pain management and rehabilitation that reduce negative post-surgery side effects, reduce the need for pain medicine including opioid drugs, and speed mobility and overall recovery.

A comprehensive patient/caregiver education program is delivered before surgery to alleviate anxiety, build confidence and empower joint replacement patients.

"Successful outcomes are dependent on everyone pulling in the same direction," said Dr. Christie. "The new facilities support teamwork — a single team laser-focused on doing one thing — taking great care of our patients."