by Elizabeth Hofheinz, M.P.H., M.Ed.
C. Lowry Barnes, M.D., the new president of the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons (AAHKS), took up his new position during an AAHKS Board of Directors video conference on March 25, 2020. Dr. Barnes, the esteemed chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS), holds the Carl L. Nelson, M.D., Chair in Orthopaedic Surgery.
Dr. Barnes has also served as AAHKS Treasurer and as treasurer for the Foundation for Arthroplasty Research and Education (FARE). When asked what role(s) have best prepared him for this position, he told OSN, “I have been in practice for almost 30 years, having started in a small private practice group, subsequently forming a large subspecialty merged group with all of our common ancillaries, and now as chair at an academic center where I also direct our service line in our system based compensation model. Because of these varied roles, I understand most of the challenges of our members.”
“With the constantly changing models of care in CMS programs for hip and knee replacements, we have committed lots of recent energy to advocacy in this area. During our current pandemic crisis, our members are very much impacted because most of our surgeries are elective surgeries. We want to advocate for our members at the national level but also help educate them on options during these turbulent times.”
Asked how he is leading in this time of turmoil, Dr. Barnes told OSN, “My standard leadership style is that I lead from within and that I do not micro-manage. Because of the function of our strong Presidential Line, Board of Directors, Committees, and the best organizational staff in healthcare, this will be easy. That being said, I do hope to be available personally to any member who needs my help.”
Dr. Barnes graduated with honors from the UAMS College of Medicine in 1986, followed by an internship and residency in orthopaedic surgery at UAMS. He then completed a fellowship in adult reconstruction surgery and arthritis surgery at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Driven by a desire to advance healing, Dr. Barnes founded the HipKnee Arkansas Foundation, a nonprofit research foundation and motion detection laboratory to further study patients with arthritis. He is an active researcher and has been widely published. He sits on the editorial boards of peer-reviewed publications, including the Journal of Arthroplasty, and serves as editor of the Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances.
Dr. Barnes holds four patents on devices that he developed and has designed more than a few hip and knee implants. A believer in giving back, he has participated in Operation Walk trips with chapters from Los Angeles, Boston, Maryland, and Little Rock, Arkansas.