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Posted on January 19, 2007 at 10:40 a.m.
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - UAB Hospital is the first health care institution in Alabama to receive the highest available level of accreditation from the American College of Surgeons: Level 1A Bariatric Center of Excellence.
The certification brings UAB into the ACS Bariatric Surgery Network Program, which currently is comprised of fewer than 30 institutions nationwide. The designation means that UAB Hospital provides a full-service, comprehensive weight-loss surgery program and that it has a proven record of providing the highest-quality care for the most challenging and complex bariatric patients, with optimal opportunity for safe and effective outcomes.
Ronald H. Clements, M.D., who directs UAB's bariatric surgery program, said, "We are proud to have received this high designation from the ACS. It indicates that we have a large volume of surgeries that are conducted by professional services of breadth and depth. It tells the public and the professional community that we have met extremely high standards for physical resources, human resources, clinical standards, surgeon credentialing standards, data reporting standards, and verification/approvals processes. This also demonstrates the high level of commitment to safe bariatric surgery on the part of the administration of the hospital."
UAB Hospital's program underwent a site visit to affirm that the level appropriate high-quality standards of the ACS bariatric accreditation program have been met. The period of accreditation is for three years; however, centers must maintain their accreditation status during this period by submitting an annual report documenting their continued compliance with the program's requirements and must also report its outcomes.
Among other advantages of the accreditation, eligible bariatric surgical patients may qualify for coverage under the terms set by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
People wanting more information on the UAB bariatric surgery program may call 205-975-0471 or access its website, http://www.uab.edu/obesitysurgery . The ACS bariatric surgery network website address is http://www.facs.org/cqi/bscn/index.html .