after a bariatric procedure, while
low at an accredited center,
was 2. 26 to 3. 57 times higher
at a non-accredited facility.
Nearly all the studies used risk
adjustment, which compensates
for different levels of patient
risk and which experts believe
makes results more accurate.
Only three studies ( 23 percent)
failed to show a significant
benefit of accreditation.
Drs. Morton and Azagury also
analyzed studies that reported
average hospital charges and
found lower costs at accredited
centers. “Accredited bariatric
surgical centers provide not
only safer care but also less
expensive care,” Dr. Morton said.
A systematic review was the
best way to study this issue,
according to Dr. Morton. He
said most insurers today will
not cover surgical care at non-
accredited bariatric centers,
making it difficult to perform a
randomized controlled clinical
trial. In 2013, the Centers for
Medicare & Medicaid Services
(CMS) stopped requiring
Medicare beneficiaries to
undergo bariatric operations
at accredited bariatric centers
as a condition of coverage.
Meanwhile, a growing
number of patients are choosing
surgical treatment for obesity—
widely considered the most
effective long-term weight-loss
therapy. An estimated 179,000
patients underwent gastric
bypass, gastric banding, and
other bariatric operations in 2013
compared with 158,000 two years
earlier, according to the ASMBS.
“These results provide
important information that
can be used to guide future
policy decisions. Perhaps CMS
should revisit this policy again,”
Dr. Morton suggested.
Read the JACS article at www.
7515( 16)30267-8/fulltext. ♦
Submit abstracts by November 2 for
Annual ACS Surgical Simulation Meeting
The American College of Surgeons Accredited
Education Institutes (ACS-AEI) Program is offering
the opportunity to present original papers,
descriptive papers, work-in-progress outlines,
and research ideas at the Annual ACS Surgical
Simulation Meeting (formerly the Annual Meeting
of the AEI Consortium), March 17–18, 2017, in
Chicago, IL. The abstract submission deadline is
11: 59 pm (Central) Wednesday, November 2.
All consortium abstract submissions must
be from original research in either simulation-
based surgical education or implementation
of innovative simulation-based surgical
education methods. The AEI Consortium is a
network of 81 Comprehensive and 13 Focused
ACS-Accredited Education Institutes.
To view additional information and
submit an abstract, visit the ACS website