Care Center Spotlight: The Center for Advanced Orthopedics & Sports Medicine
The Center for Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine was founded in 1982 by Dr. Shaheer Yousaf, a general orthopaedic surgeon. He has since opened a satellite office in California, Md. He runs the two office locations along with the practice’s nine staff members.
A native of Pakistan, Dr. Yousaf immigrated to the United States in 1975 to pursue his medical education at New York Medical College and Rutgers University. He ultimately moved to Maryland because of its proximity to the great education centers in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore.
As a general orthopaedic surgeon, Dr. Yousaf treats a variety of injuries and ailments through total joint replacements, arthroscopic procedures, cartilage repairs, regeneration operations and more, with a special focus on knees and shoulders. Despite his surgical expertise, Dr. Yousaf and his colleagues view the practice as a healing center rather than a surgical center. They look for non-operative treatment options whenever possible, offering patients customized treatment plans that are most effective for their health.
Dr. Yousaf encourages his patients to make lifestyle changes that will benefit their health in the long-term, such as weight loss and smoking cessation. The Center for Advanced Orthopedics has a public health expert on staff, who coaches overweight patients experiencing joint pain to lose weight and eat healthier. Similarly, the practice works closely with patients regarding smoking habits, which can be detrimental to their musculoskeletal health. Often, these lifestyle changes can yield the same outcome as surgery at a lower cost, and about one-third of patients who lose weight eliminate the need for joint surgery altogether.
Embracing the same core values as The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics (corporate), Dr. Yousaf holds patient-centered care in high regard. The practice was built with these principles in mind, which can be seen in every patient interaction. Patients may walk into the office afraid or anxious about their pending treatment or injury, but through compassionate care, they come to trust that The Center for Advanced Orthopedics will care for them in the safest, most proven and cost-effective way.
Patients have a dynamic and active engagement in their care because Dr. Yousaf provides a comprehensive education about their injury or ailment. Particularly for elective or non-emergency cases, all treatment options, including those lifestyle changes, are explored so patients can make the best decisions for their health. Dr. Yousaf’s goal is to bring patients to his level of knowledge surrounding their condition so they feel comfortable and empowered throughout the treatment process.
Dr. Yousaf is also highly active in student education, as he works closely with the Charles County Board of Education Co-op Program. Each year, he welcomes student interns from local high schools to see how a medical office is managed. Interns shadow Dr. Yousaf and office assistants, interview patients, take patients’ vitals and help to administer the Oxford Score to determine outcomes. Dr. Yousaf notes that high school students have little understanding of what it means to be a healthcare professional, and he hopes to close that gap and educate students before they pursue higher education.
Dr. Yousaf and his staff chose to join forces with The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics because they felt the pressures of being a small orthopaedic practice in a big market for healthcare. Despite having a solid self-image and a strong sense of pride for their work within the community, the practice felt they could better serve their patients with the support of the larger group. Dr. Yousaf feels great joy working with his CAO colleagues, and has seen the benefits of sharing clinical best practices. Moving forward, Dr. Yousaf feels he can have even more impact on the Southern Maryland community through The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics.