Most health systems aim to deliver patient-centered care, although the term, admittedly, has been interpreted in many ways since its rise to prominence more than 20 years ago. We all believe that to accommodate true patient-centered care, the focus of health care system must shift from only treating disease to also creating health and well-being. This requires adopting a new, integrated model that helps people fulfill their own health needs
In light of the above mentioned, we are delighted to present IMAC Regeneration Centers, a multi-specialty healthcare clinic delivering regenerative medicine and wellness for movement challenges.
Interview Excerpt: Jeff Ervin, CEO & Matt Wallis, Founder
Tell us about your company.
IMAC Regeneration Centers was formed because of the need for options in healthcare that do not involve surgery or prescription pain medication. Founder, Dr. Matt Wallis, began researching treatments for his own herniated disc several years ago after realizing that chiropractic alone couldn’t repair the damage and was determined to avoid surgery. After traveling to many clinics in the United States and abroad, he decided to take the treatments that were most effective in the areas of regenerative medicine, combine them with physical therapy and chiropractic, and bring together top medical professionals to pioneer new treatment protocols.
The result is a series of outpatient medical clinics with practitioners of varied specialties collaborating to provide treatments for arthritis, joint pain, back pain, soft tissue and ligament damage, and movement-restricting health challenges. The medical teams include medical doctors, nurse practitioners, doctors of physical therapy, and doctors of chiropractic. Each clinic has an innovative service-focused design to minimize patient wait times.
IMAC treats patients of all ages and skill levels. The patients range from accomplished athletes visiting the clinics to maintain optimal performance using innovative regenerative tissue therapies, to elderly patients needing options other than joint replacement surgery to stay mobile, active, or independently stable. Similar techniques are used to prevent arthritis, treat meniscus tears and defeat muscle deterioration for baby boomers and dependent seniors.
The fight against the opioid epidemic
Perhaps what singles IMAC Regeneration Centers out most, is their proactive approach in fighting the opioid epidemic. In 2016, an estimate of over 600,000 knee replacement surgeries and 500,000 spinal fusion surgeries were performed in the United States. Nearly 100% of these procedures resulted in a prescription for opioid-based pain killers. Opioids are one of few topics that unite bipartisan interest on Capitol Hill, prompting President Trump to declare the opioid crisis a public health emergency. A small percentage of surgeries lead to opioid addition, but surgeries that “necessitate” pain killers are one distribution source to the same crisis the government is attempting to contain. IMAC Regeneration Centers provide alternative treatments for joint replacement and spinal fusion and have never written an opioid prescription in company history.
“We have had countless patients come to us desperate for alternatives to surgery,” says Dr. Wallis. “Many of them have been on prescription pain medication and are suffering terribly because of the addiction. They have lost their family, their job, and in many cases admittedly are contemplating suicide. At the same time, they are in excruciating pain and need a solution that will solve the underlying health problem. We give them hope and through our treatments, they have a chance to gain their life back – and thankfully, most of them have.”
“Most companies that partner in fighting the opioid epidemic provide solutions after the problem has occurred,” CEO, Jeff Ervin adds. “What makes us different, and we believe the best chance to conquer the opioid epidemic, is to prevent the problem from ever occurring. People will always have health conditions such as chronic back pain, arthritis, torn ACLs and damaged knee joints, but our goal is to treat the problem with regenerative medicine protocols that allow the person to heal naturally and avoid the surgery altogether that creates the potential for addiction. It is flattering to hear patients refer to us as the ‘Whole Foods of Healthcare’.”
How did your partnership form with St. Louis Cardinals Super Star, Ozzie Smith?
We met Ozzie at IMAC Regeneration Center in Paducah. He had some nagging injuries from playing sports and wanted to consider all options. He heard we were pioneering new ways to regenerate and heal damaged tissue without medication and surgery. Ozzie felt positive about the possibilities and made his way to Paducah. With his shoulder cartilage worn down, he would wake up in pain and it was affecting simple daily activities. He just wanted to get back to playing golf and is now able to participate in spring training and throw the baseball again without pain.
Ozzie’s primary concern, however, was for the people of St. Louis to have health care options that would offer medical treatments without prescription pain medication or surgery. Earlier this year, Missouri’s Governor Greitens labeled the opioid epidemic as a “modern plague”. One in every sixty-six deaths in Missouri was opioid related last year and Missouri is on track for even more in 2017. Too many Missouri families, communities, and businesses have experienced the tragedy of losing a loved one to this epidemic, and Ozzie was determined to fight back. “The most important thing about St. Louis is the people,” says Ozzie Smith. “They are very giving people and they deserve positive things to happen in this community. We are committed to helping the great people of St. Louis have a wonderful future.” He has been thrilled with the progress of patients that have received treatment at the Ozzie Smith IMAC Regeneration Center. “To see someone get out of their wheelchair for the first time in years and walk is the greatest feeling in the world.”
The partnership with Ozzie has led to other partnerships in other markets. Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price’s was the second athlete to name an IMAC clinic. Price’s philanthropic efforts through the Project One Four Foundation led to the creation of a handicap-accessible baseball field named Miracle Field in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. His hands-on approach to spending time with the children on the field, inspiring and teaching them about the game of baseball and being on a team, shows his commitment to changing lives for the better. That passion continued as Price partnered with IMAC. “I am very excited about the opening of the David Price IMAC Regeneration Center,” says Price. “Regenerative procedures are done often by Major League Baseball teams, and I have seen several teammates have success with it during my years of playing. I look forward to hearing more success stories from people visiting the new center in Murfreesboro, my hometown.”
What were the grounds on which you have expanded your company and its offerings over the years?
Dr. Matt Wallis: After my back injury and discovery of treatments such as Platelet-Rich-Plasma and autologous stem cells, I began working with a Neurosurgeon to begin the process of developing a treatment that could potentially heal my own discs. The treatment was a complete success and we began offering the same option to other people trying to avoid surgery. At the time, regenerative medicine was known because of professional athletes traveling to other countries for treatment. We could provide a solution to common health problems such as knee, back and neck pain– without surgery or prescription pain medication. Our team of doctors has continued to develop protocols utilizing the patient’s platelet-rich-plasma and stem cells and we consistently see people drastically improve. From getting out of a wheelchair and walking again to reducing prescription pain medication and being able to go back to work and spend quality time with their family, each patient has a unique story of health and healing.
What do you feel are the reasons behind the tremendous growth and recent company ranking on the INC 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies list?
For a 17 year old company, a 3-year revenue growth rate of 178 percent demonstrates the escalating demand for non-surgical options for degenerative health conditions.
We are extremely proud of our progress and continued opportunity to reach patients in need of IMAC services. This is our first time on the list and is a very special achievement. I feel our mission to provide patients a customized, innovative solution to health conditions - without surgery or prescription pain medication - has led to remarkable growth. The fact that our patients trust us with their healthcare is the reason we are on this list and we are so grateful to each one of them.
Where do you see you and your company a couple of years from now?
We have the ability to quantify the outcomes we deliver and we are able to use that data to create custom treatment plans for our patients. In two years, IMAC Regeneration Centers will expand beyond three markets in three states and become a household name throughout middle America because the innovative treatments we deliver, supported by science, will continue to deliver successful medical outcomes.
Team behind the success
Jeff Ervin, CEO: Jeff has significant experience sourcing and developing strategic initiatives in private equity placement and operations of high growth entities. His passion for innovative strategies and delivery models began in financial roles within Silicon Valley startup and reorganization companies. Upon completing his MBA, he recognized shortcomings in the healthcare industry and spent six years sourcing and managing equity investment opportunities on behalf of the Baptist Hospital System of Nashville. Later, Jeff joined IMAC Regeneration Centers in February, 2015 as CEO. He has led IMAC’s expansion into new markets in partnership with accomplished athletes. Jeff is a graduate of Miami University, completed continuing education coursework at Stanford University, and earned his MBA from the Owen School at Vanderbilt University.
Dr. Matt Wallis, Founder:
Dr. Wallis graduated with his Doctor of Chiropractic degree in 1998 from Life University in Marietta, GA. Wishing to provide chiropractic care in his hometown of Paducah, he purchased Lone Oak Chiropractic and began to build the business around his passion for helping people obtain a better quality of life. Over the next few years, Dr. Wallis developed protocols for regenerative medicine, combining the disciplines of chiropractic, physical therapy and medical treatments and the concept for IMAC Regeneration Centers was born.