MedStar Montgomery Medical Center Recognized for Distinguish Quality, Health Outcomes in Bariatric Surgery

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CareFirst names the Olney-based community hospital among the nationally recognized Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery

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"Recognition of our bariatric program as a Blue Distinction Center reaffirms our ongoing commitment to delivering outstanding comprehensive weight loss care to our patients," said Thomas J. Senker, FACHE, president of MedStar Montgomery Medical Center.

MedStar Health, today announced MedStar Montgomery Medical Center has been recognized as a Blue Distinction® Center for Bariatric Surgery by CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst), part of CareFirst’s Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. MedStar Montgomery earned the distinction as a nationally designated healthcare facility for its commitment to delivering high quality patient safety and better health outcomes.

To receive a Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery designation, a healthcare facility must demonstrate success in meeting patient safety measures as well as bariatric-specific quality measures, including complication and readmission rate for laparoscopic procedures in sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, and adjustable gastric band. Blue Distinction Centers are named based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations.

MedStar Montgomery Medical Center is proud to be recognized by CareFirst for meeting the rigorous Blue Distinction Center quality selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. MedStar Montgomery provides patients valuable pre-surgery education, weight loss strategies customized for patients, accessible team of professionals and recovery support—all aimed to help individuals meet their individual health and wellness goals.

“We are proud of our ability to help patients regain their health and establish a path toward healthy living that benefits not only themselves, but their entire family,” said Thomas J. Senker, FACHE, president of MedStar Montgomery Medical Center. “Recognition of our bariatric program as a Blue Distinction Center reaffirms our ongoing commitment to delivering outstanding comprehensive weight loss care to our patients.”

Research shows that, compared to other healthcare facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients.

Bariatric surgeries are among the most common elective surgeries in the U.S., with more than 252,000 bariatric surgeries performed in 2018 based on a report from the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that nearly 42.7 percent of U.S. adults and 18.5 percent of youth are obese and are impacted by obesity-related health conditions. With obesity reaching epidemic levels among U.S. adults, a significant opportunity exists to improve quality care for bariatric surgeries within the national healthcare system.

The annual healthcare spend on obesity and obesity-related conditions expected is expected to rise by 2030, if the rate of obesity in the U.S. continues to climb. Bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment for severely obese patients because it allows for substantial, sustained weight loss, which leads to, improves, or resolves obesity-related co-morbidities like type 2 diabetes. On average, healthcare costs were reduced by 29 percent within five years following bariatric surgery, due to the reduction or elimination of obesity-related conditions, based on findings by ASMBS.

For more information about MedStar Montgomery’s bariatric services visit https://www.medstarmontgomery.org/our-services/bariatric-surgery/services/bariatric-surgery-program/. For more information about the program and for a complete listing of designated facilities, visit http://www.bcbs.com/bluedistinction.

About MedStar Montgomery Medical Center and MedStar Health
MedStar Montgomery Medical Center is a not-for-profit, acute care community hospital serving Montgomery County, Maryland. For 100 years, MedStar Montgomery has served as a medical care provider and community health resource offering high-quality, personalized care. MedStar Montgomery provides a broad range of healthcare specialties, advanced technologies, and treatments not traditionally found at community hospitals—including cutting-edge care in obstetrics, orthopedics, breast health, and oncology. MedStar Health is the region's largest non-profit and most trusted integrated healthcare delivery system, giving patients access to the latest in modern medicine and medical technology within a community hospital setting.

About CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
In its 83nd year of service, CareFirst, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a not-for-profit health care company which, through its affiliates and subsidiaries, offers a comprehensive portfolio of health insurance products and administrative services to 3.3 million individuals and groups in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. In 2019, CareFirst invested $43 million to improve overall health, and increase the accessibility, affordability, safety and quality of healthcare throughout its market areas. To learn more about CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, visit our website at http://www.carefirst.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Instagram.

About the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 36 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide health care coverage for one in three Americans. BCBSA provides health care insights through The Health of America Report series and the national BCBS Health IndexSM. For more information on BCBSA and its member companies, please visit bcbs.com. We also encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out our blog.

About Blue Distinction Centers
Blue Distinction Centers (BDC) met overall quality measures, developed with input from the medical community. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for providers located in its own service area; for details, contact your Local Blue Plan. Blue Distinction Centers+ (BDC+) also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable healthcare. Each provider’s cost of care is evaluated using data from its Local Blue Plan. Providers in CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in two Local Blue Plans’ areas, resulting in two evaluations for cost of care; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether one or both cost of care evaluation(s) must meet BDC+ national criteria. National criteria for BDC and BDC+ are displayed on http://www.bcbs.com. Individual outcomes may vary. For details on a provider’s in-network status or your own policy’s coverage, contact your Local Blue Plan and ask your provider before making an appointment. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for noncovered charges or other losses or damages resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.

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