Four Banner Health facilities in Arizona have met rigorous criteria to earn national accreditation for metabolic and bariatric surgery.

Banner – University Medical Center Phoenix and Banner Estrella Medical Center in Phoenix join Banner Gateway Medical Center in Gilbert and Banner – University Medical Centers in Tucson to achieve national accreditation from the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP).

The accreditation program is a joint effort of the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. The standards ensure that bariatric surgical patients receive a highly-coordinated multidisciplinary program which improves patient outcomes and long-term success. The accredited centers offer education, medical weight loss approaches, bariatric surgical procedures and expert preoperative and postoperative care designed for obese patients.

“This accreditation signifies that throughout Banner, the medical and surgical teams that work with patients affected by obesity are highly-trained to offer personalized service and state of the art care.” said Robin Blackstone, MD director of the Banner – University Medicine Metabolic and Bariatric Center. “Each of the four centers has specific areas of focus with a wide range of expertise in the treatment of obesity in adults and adolescents. The programs are a resource for referral of patients initially treated in the outpatient setting who fail to meet their weight related health goals.”

To earn the accreditation designation, each Banner Health facility met essential criteria for staffing, training and facility infrastructure and protocols for care, ensuring its ability to support patients with obesity. The facilities also participate in a national data registry that yields risk adjusted semiannual reports on the quality of its processes and outcomes, identifying opportunities for continuous quality improvement.

In the United States obesity and related medical disease affects more than 78.6 million adults and 110 million adolescents according to the National Institutes of Health. It is expected that obesity will affect 42 percent of the population by 2030. These sobering numbers have prompted Banner Health to commit to a leadership role nationwide in treating obesity and related disease.

Obesity increases the risks of morbidity and mortality because of the diseases and conditions that are commonly associated with it, such as type II diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease, among other health risks. Metabolic and bariatric surgical procedures have proven to be effective in the reduction of comorbid conditions related to severe obesity.

Part of the mission of the Banner University Medical Center Programs is to engage in research that can reverse that trend. At Banner University, Medical Center Phoenix, Banner has established the Institute for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity which combines the research and treatment efforts of a range of specialists working together.