Huntington Memorial Hospital Among First to Receive Blue Distinction® Designations for Quality, Cost-Effective Bariatric Surgery

July 13, 2015

Huntington Memorial Hospital has been named as one of the first healthcare facilities in the nation to receive a Blue Distinction® Center+designation in the area of bariatric surgery by the Blue Distinctions Centers for Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction®Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities shown to deliver quality specialty care based on objective measures, which were developed with input from the medical community, for patient safety and better health outcomes.

To receive a Blue Distinction Center+ for Bariatric Surgery designation, a healthcare facility must demonstrate success in meeting patient safety as well as bariatric-specific quality measures, including complications and readmissions, for gastric stapling and/or gastric banding procedures. A healthcare facility must also have earned national accreditations at both the facility level and the bariatric care-specific level, as well as demonstrate better cost efficiency relative to its peers.

Quality is key: only those facilities that first meet Blue Distinction’s nationally-established, objective quality measures will be considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+. Huntington Hospital is proud to be recognized by our local health plan, Anthem Blue Cross for meeting the rigorous selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program.

“On behalf of the entire bariatric team, we are honored to be recognized as a Blue Distinction® Center,” said David Lourie, MD, director, bariatric surgery program, Huntington Hospital. “Bariatric surgery is an effective tool for patients who have obesity-related conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease, and is used as part of comprehensive plans developed by our team. By following these plans, we have been able to help thousands of people improve their quality of life, which often includes educating them about nutrition, exercise and behavior modifications.”

Research shows that facilities designated as Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients compared with their peers. On average, Blue Distinction Centers+ are also 20 percent or more cost efficient than non-BDC+ designated healthcare facilities.

Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality providers for their specialty care needs in the areas of bariatric surgery, cardiac care, complex and rare cancers, knee and hip replacements, spine surgery, and transplants while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the care they deliver. For more information about the program and for a complete listing of the designated facilities, please visit BCBS.com/bluedistinction.

People interested in learning more about the various options available regarding the surgical treatment of obesity are invited to attend one of the bariatric symposiums held at Huntington Hospital. They take place the first Wednesday of each month from 7-9 p.m.

People may also find a physician by calling(800) 903-9233.

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