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Rothman Orthopaedics, AdventHealth provide orthopedic physicians for Orlando Solar Bears

ORLANDO, Fla., Rothman Orthopaedic Institute was announced as the Orlando Solar Bears’ official orthopedic team physicians at the start of the season in partnership with AdventHealth, the team’s official health care provider. In addition to providing world-class orthopedic care to the team, Rothman and AdventHealth will have logo exposure on-ice, in arena and the use of the Solar Bears trademarks to activate the partnership in the community.

“We are thrilled to partner with Rothman Orthopaedics to revolutionize sports medicine care for the professional athletes on the Orlando Solar Bears team,” said Tricia Edris, chief innovation and partnerships officer for AdventHealth Central Florida. “And leading a healthy, active lifestyle is important, so we look forward to providing this world-class care to our larger community as well.”

“Rothman Orthopaedics has a long, specialized history in working with high-performing athletes, maintaining their quality of life year-round,” said Alexander R. Vaccaro, M.D., Ph.D, M.B.A., President of Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, Richard H. Rothman Professor and Chairman of the Department of Orthopaedics, and Professor of Neurosurgery at Thomas Jefferson University and Hospitals. “Along with AdventHealth, we’re excited to extend our team of physicians and services to the Solar Bears while delivering on our mission to provide superior musculoskeletal treatment and become more active in the communities we serve.”

“Rothman Orthopaedics sees great opportunity to partner with the Solar Bears,” said Ed Tufaro, interim CEO of Rothman Orthopaedic Institute. “The commitment we have to professional athletes is the same commitment we provide to the residents of Central Florida.”

Dr. John Ruder

Dr. John Ruder, an orthopedic sports medicine surgeon who joined Rothman in 2021, serves as the head team orthopedic surgeon. Dr. Jason Epstein, a sports medicine physician who also joined Rothman in 2021, serves as the head primary care team physician.

Ruder is no stranger to the Solar Bears as he grew up in Naples, in southwest Florida. He is a fellowship-trained sports medicine surgeon specializing in all facets of sports-related injury prevention and treatment. He treats sports-related injuries of the shoulder and knee and has a particular interest in hip preservation. He holds memberships in a number of professional societies, including the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine.

Ruder previously provided on-site medical coverage for the Birmingham Ballet Company, the Birmingham Barons, the Southeastern Conference Baseball Tournament, Tuskegee University, and Vestavia Hills High School. By utilizing a team approach to patient care, Ruder leads his patients’ treatment planning and ensures methodical communication across all medical team members.

Epstein cropped

Epstein is fellowship-trained in sports medicine and has a special interest in musculoskeletal ultrasound for both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes, physical fitness and the treatment and prevention of musculoskeletal injuries. Additionally, he is skilled in the management of sports-related concussion, core muscle and overuse injuries.

A native of New Jersey, Epstein has served as a team physician for Bethune-Cookman University, the Cincinnati Reds minor league affiliate Daytona Tortugas, Daytona State College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Legacy Dance Studio and several local high schools. He has previously worked with SpaceX to perform exercise treadmill testing for cardiovascular evaluation.

Epstein holds memberships in a number of professional societies, including the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Academy of Family Physicians.

“A team approach is necessary for sports medicine management and we are thrilled to provide Rothman’s world-class physicians and high-quality care to the Solar Bears,” said Luke S. Oh, M.D., Rothman Orthopaedics Florida Sports Medicine Surgeon and Medical Director of Orthopedic Sports Medicine for AdventHealth Orthopedic Institute.

About the Orlando Solar Bears:

The Orlando Solar Bears are the proud affiliate of the NHL’s Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning and members of the ECHL, the premier “AA” hockey league in North America. In 10 seasons of operation, the team has qualified for the Kelly Cup Playoffs five times. The Solar Bears are owned and operated by the Orlando Magic and the DeVos Family, and play at the AdventHealth Rink at Amway Center, the 2012 Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal Sports Facility of the Year.

About Rothman Orthopaedics:

Rothman Orthopaedic Institute is the largest musculoskeletal practice in the United States according to Becker’s Review. A world-leader in the field of orthopedics, Rothman Orthopaedics partners with health systems, hospitals and physicians to build enduring musculoskeletal systems of care in communities that are high-quality, compassionate, affordable and grounded in evidence-based medicine.

Rothman Orthopaedic Institute orthopedists treat patients in 43 locations and has surgical privileges at 71 facilities in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Florida. With experts in nine orthopedic sub-specialties including spine, hip and knee, foot and ankle, shoulder and elbow, hand and wrist, sports medicine, physical medicine and rehabilitation, orthopedic oncology and trauma, Rothman Orthopaedics is recognized for excellence in clinical treatment methods, research, education and technology.

Consistently recognized as national and regional “Top Docs,” Rothman Orthopaedics is proud to be the official team physicians for the Philadelphia Eagles, Phillies, the Orlando Magic, the iconic Radio City Rockettes, The Big EAST Conference, as well as over 60 college and high school teams.

For more information about Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, please visit

About the AdventHealth Central Florida Division:

AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division encompasses 18 hospitals and ERs in the six counties in and surrounding metro Orlando. The world-class hospitals, combined with a comprehensive outpatient care network, have more than 3.5 million inpatient encounters and more than 5.7 million patient visits annually.  

AdventHealth also has an expansive research portfolio in Central Florida, with more than 500 clinical trials and studies in progress. 

The organization has a deep commitment to serving the community and has a local financial impact of more than $1 billion annually. AdventHealth and its employees are responsible for nearly 20 percent of Central Florida’s economy.

The division’s flagship campus — AdventHealth Orlando — boasts nationally and internationally recognized programs, and serves as a major tertiary and quaternary referral hospital for much of the Southeast, the Caribbean and Latin America. Quality specialty care is provided through AdventHealth Institutes, which is nationally recognized in numerous specialties. 

AdventHealth Orlando has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Leapfrog Group. 

Learn more about the Central Florida Division on our Newsroom.