OrthoNeuro Corp., a developer and operator of orthopedic and neurosurgical hospitals throughout the U.S., has landed $7.5 million in Series A financing from New Enterprise Associates (NEA).

The capital raised in this round will be used to fund the company’s initial hospital projects, the first located in Austin, TX. OrthoNeuro has partnered with 32 local physicians to develop Austin Surgical Hospital, which is expected to open in the second quarter of 2003.

The company also raised another $1 million from management.

“OrthoNeuro’s focus is on delivering the highest quality care at a low cost for orthopedic and spine procedures,” Steve Puckett, founder and chairman of OrthoNeuro. “We are very fortunate to have NEA as our lead investor…they will bring a wealth of knowledge and relationships to assist us.”

In connection with the funding, two of NEA’s partners joined the OrthoNeuro board. The first is Charles W. Newhall, general partner based in Baltimore.

“We have great confidence in Steve Puckett — and Todd Johnson, CEO, both of whom have extensive experience in the specialty hospital market,” said Newhall.

Also joining the OrthoNeuro board is Charles M. Linehan, an NEA partner based in the firm’s Menlo Park, CA, office.

“Our investment in OrthoNeuro Corporation demonstrates our confidence in the ability of the specialty hospital model to deliver superior patient outcomes at lower costs while also offering greater convenience to patients and clinicians,” said Linehan. “NEA believes that OrthoNeuro will offer a superior service to the large and growing orthopedic/neurosurgical services market.”

Based in Charlotte, OrthoNeuro is a privately held healthcare services company founded in early 2002 to develop and operate orthopedic and neurosurgical hospitals in partnership with leading orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons throughout the country.

OrthoNeuro Corp.: www.orthoneurocorp.com