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Penn Medicine opened a $10 million spine center this month, which will provide treatment for patients with chronic back pain and spinal conditions.

The new Penn Spine Center, which opened on March 1, is located at Pennsylvania Hospital at 8th and Spruce streets. The center offers both inpatient and outpatient treatment and is staffed by specialists from orthopedics, neurology, physical medicine, and pain management.

While Penn Medicine has been treating patients with spinal conditions throughout the greater Philadelphia region, the new spine center provides more convenient care by integrating surgery, appointments, pain management, and imaging into one location for all stages of care. 

“Increasing the efficiency of treatment will help get patients back on their feet as quickly as possible," medical director of the Penn Spine Center William Welch told Penn Medicine News

Back pain is one of the most common health problems in the United States – approximately 50 to 80 percent of Americans will experience chronic back pain at some point in their life. 

In a study, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the number of Americans over 65 years old who experienced lower back pain, in the prior three months, rose from 29.5 percent in 1997 to 33.7 percent in 2013.

Welch, who also chairs Pennsylvania Hospital's neurosurgery department, added that faster treatment will help decrease the financial costs of spinal care.

“Here at the nation’s first hospital, we’re bringing together a multidisciplinary team, representing a vision for the future of care for patients that no other health system in the region can match,” CEO of Pennsylvania Hospital Theresa Larivee told Penn Medicine News.

Correction: A previous version of this article stated the Penn Spine Center opened on March 11 when, in fact, it opened on March 1. The DP regrets this error. 

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