Palmdale Regional Medical Center Recognized for Higher Quality in Bariatric Surgery by Anthem Blue Cross®

Thursday, January 14, 2021
Palmdale Regional Medical Center Recognized for Higher Quality in Bariatric Surgery by Anthem Blue Cross®

Palmdale Regional Medical Center is proud to be recognized by Anthem Blue Cross® with a Blue Distinction® Centers for Bariatric Surgery designation, as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities that show a commitment to delivering high quality patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations.

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Distinction Center, Palmdale Regional Medical Center

The Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery program provides a full range of bariatric surgery care; including surgical care, post-operative care, outpatient follow-up care, and patient education. 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.

Palmdale Regional Medical Center is proud to be recognized by Anthem Blue Cross for meeting the rigorous Blue Distinction Center quality selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. "The weight-loss program at Palmdale Regional has been awarded multiple times for specialty care and high quality accomplishments for bariatric patients," says Richard Allen, CEO at Palmdale Regional. "We couldn’t be more proud of this recognition from Anthem Blue Cross. Without the dedicated supervision from the director of our program, Dr. John Yadegar, and our bariatric coordinator, Christina Phillips, not to mention the amazing nurses and support staff who care for our bariatric patients as they recover from surgery, we wouldn’t be able to earn such an honor. A big thank you to them all for this great achievement."

The annual healthcare spend on obesity and obesity-related conditions is expected to rise by 2030, if the rate of obesity in the U.S. continues to climb.1 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.

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. All designated facilities must also be nationally accredited at both the facility and bariatric program-specific levels.

"The Blue Distinction program is another example of Anthem Blue Cross’ commitment to ensuring our members have access to high-quality specialty care delivered safely and effectively though our in-network providers," said Dr. John Yao, Senior Chief Medical Officer at Anthem Blue Cross. "We commend Palmdale Regional Medical Center on its designation as a Blue Distinction Center for Bariatric Surgery."

Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality specialty care in the areas of bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac care, cellular immunotherapy, fertility care, gene therapy, knee and hip replacement, maternity care, spine surgery, substance use treatment and recovery, and transplants, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the care they deliver. Research shows that, compared to other healthcare facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients.

Learn more about the program and get a complete listing of designated facilities →

Individual results may vary. There are risks associated with any surgical procedure. Talk with your doctor about these risks to find out if bariatric surgery is right for you.

1 Wang, Y. C., McPherson, K., Marsh, T., Gortmaker, S. L., & Brown, M. (2011). Health and economic burden of the projected obesity trends in the USA and the UK. Lancet (London, England), 378(9793), 815–825.