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Hospital receives national Bariatric Surgery Center accreditation

New Haven —The Bariatric Surgery Program at Yale New Haven Hospital has been accredited as a Level 1a facility by the Bariatric Surgery Center Network (BSCN) Accreditation Program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS). This designation means that Yale New Haven Hospital has voluntarily met the essential criteria that ensures it is fully capable of supporting a bariatric surgery care program and that its institutional performance meets the requirements outlined by the ACS BSCN Accreditation Program.

Yale New Haven - the first and currently only hospital in Connecticut that offers three different bariatric surgical treatments for obesity using minimally invasive techniques - underwent an on-site verification by experienced bariatric surgeons, who reviewed the center's structure, process, quality of data, and performance measures for treating obese patients. There are four categories of accreditation for inpatient facilities (Level 1a, 1b, 2a, and 2b). Each category has specific criteria that must be met by a facility seeking that level of accreditation.

"In the United States, more than 11 million people suffer from severe obesity, and the numbers continue to rise," said Robert L. Bell, MD, MA, FACS, director of the Bariatric Surgery Program at Yale New Haven Hospital. "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. Currently, weight-loss surgery provides the only effective, lasting relief from severe obesity.

"The ACS believes it is of utmost importance to extend its quality initiatives to accrediting bariatric surgery centers to help the public identify those facilities that provide optimal surgical care for patients who undergo this surgical procedure," added Dr. Bell.

Established by the American College of Surgeons in 2005 in an effort to extend established quality improvement practices to all disciplines of surgical care, the ACS BSCN Accreditation Program provides confirmation that a bariatric surgery center has demonstrated its commitment to providing the highest quality care for its bariatric surgery patients. Accredited bariatric surgery centers provide not only the hospital resources necessary for optimal care of morbidly obese patients, but also the support and resources that are necessary to address the entire spectrum of care and needs of bariatric patients, from the pre-hospital phase through the post-operative care and treatment process.

Yale New Haven Hospital (YNHH), part of Yale New Haven Health, is a nationally recognized, 1,541-bed, not-for-profit hospital serving as the primary teaching hospital for the Yale School of Medicine (YSM). Founded as the fourth voluntary hospital in the U.S. in 1826, today, YNHH has two New Haven-based campuses, and also includes Yale New Haven Children's Hospital, Yale New Haven Psychiatric Hospital and Smilow Cancer Hospital. YNHH has received Magnet designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the nation’s highest honor of nursing excellence. YNHH has a combined medical staff of about 4,500 university and community physicians practicing in more than 100 specialties.