HOUSTON (March 27, 2015)

Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital has been named a Blue Distinction Center® for its gastric banding and stapling programs by Blue Cross Blue Shield.

“Our specially trained nurses, physicians and support staff understand and are attuned to the specific needs of each weight loss patient,” said Nikole Keenan, R.N., B.S.N., Director of Bariatric Services at Memorial Hermann Southeast. “The team is dedicated to providing high quality care, and this national distinction recognizes their emphasis on patient safety and outcomes,”

Bariatricsurgeries are among the most common elective surgeries in the U.S. There were almost 180,000 bariatric surgeries performed in 2013, according to the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. Furthermore, it is estimated 72 million Americans are obese and 24 million suffer from morbid obesity, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Obesity can lead to a number of health problems including heart disease and cardiovascular problems, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, cancer, digestive and breathing problems, and arthritis.

Programs named Blue Distinction Centers® have met nationally established quality care, patient safety and outcomes criteria for bariatric surgery that have been developed with input from the medical community. Since its inception in 2008, Blue Distinction Specialty Care has helped Blue Cross Blue Shield members along with their physicians identify facilities with a history of quality care.

Memorial Hermann Southeast offers a full range of minimally invasive weight loss surgery options to consider, including Gastric Band & Lap Band, Gastric Sleeve, and Gastric Bypass Roux-en-Y. The hospital is a fully accredited Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program center by the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.