Weight-loss Surgery Program at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center Named Among Best in the Nation

March 29, 2012

BURBANK (June 21, 2011) – The weight loss surgery program at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center was ranked this week as the best in Los Angeles and named among the top programs in the nation by a leading consumer ratings agency.

The bariatric surgery program received HealthGrades’ Excellence Award for weight loss surgery. Providence Saint Joseph in Burbank was just one of 17 California hospitals to receive the award and one of 58 nationwide.

Bariatric surgeries include the gastric-bypass procedure for the morbidly obese, those at least 100 pounds overweight, as well as less complex procedures including stomach banding for those with less weight to lose.

“This is a combined success story – the entire bariatric team deserves credit,” said this surgeon Philippe Quilici, M.D., who leads the program. “Our nurses, the administration, the entire bariatric team from data entry to clinical coordination to the educational team make our program a Center of Excellence. And we also have to share the credit with our patients because it’s their commitment that leads to success.”

Dr. Quilici is known among his patients as a no-nonsense advocate – one who insists his patients are dedicated to following post-surgery instructions to aid in weight loss and to limit surgical complications.

The bariatrics program at Providence Saint Joseph is the only surgical weight loss program in California to be certified by two top review boards, the American College of Surgeons and the Surgical Review. That duel-certification opens the program to broader insurance coverage for patients. “Obesity is an epidemic in this country and is linked to serious illnesses including heart disease and diabetes,” said Barry Wolfman, chief executive of Providence Saint Joseph. “I have met patients here who have lost more than half their weight through bariatric surgery and are forever grateful to this program for helping them change their lives and vastly improve their health.”

Patients seeking weight loss surgery at Providence Saint Joseph are required to undergo a qualification process as well as pre-operative instruction to ensure they are prepared for the lifestyle changes necessary to make the surgery successful. That instruction includes talks by former patients who have shed hundreds of pounds following surgery.

The Excellence Award ratings by HealthGrades were based on an analysis of 193,518 bariatric surgery discharges from 2007-09 at 468 hospitals in 19 states.