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Recognized as a Blue Distinction Center for Bariatric Surgery

Carteret Health Care is proud to announce that Carteret Health Care’s Weight Loss Surgery Center has been named a Blue Distinction Center + for Bariatric Surgery.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC) recognized Carteret Health Care with a Blue Distinction® Center+ for Bariatric Surgery designation as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated health care facilities that show expertise in delivering improved patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community.

“We are honored to have earned this outstanding recognition for our Bariatric Surgery program,” said Dick Brvenik, Carteret Health Care President. “This designation reflects our excellent clinical outcomes, expert staff and the value our team provides to patients and prospective patients in our County and region.

To receive a Blue Distinction Center+ for Bariatric Surgery designation, a health care facility must be nationally accredited at both the facility and bariatric program-specific levels while demonstrating success in meeting patient safety measures as well as bariatric-specific quality measures. A health care facility must also demonstrate cost-efficiency compared to its peers.

Carteret Health Care’s Weight Loss Surgery Center is proud to be recognized by Blue Cross NC for meeting the rigorous Blue Distinction Center+ quality and cost selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

Bariatric surgeries are among the most common elective surgeries in the U.S. Furthermore, it is estimated that nearly 36.5 percent of U.S. adults and 17 percent of youth are obese and impacted by obesity-related health conditions, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The estimated annual health care costs of obesity-related conditions are nearly $210 billion per year in the U.S., according to the Journal of Health Economics. On average, health care costs were reduced by 29 percent within five years following bariatric surgery, due to the reduction or elimination of obesity-related conditions, according to ASMBS.

“We congratulate Carteret Health Care on receiving recognition for providing high quality care and helping our members better manage their care through the Blue Distinction Specialty Care Program,” said Dr. John Smith, Lead Medical Director at Blue Cross NC.

Health care facilities recognized with this designation are assessed using a combination of publicly available quality information and cost measures derived from BCBS companies’ medical claims. Research shows that, compared to other health care facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients. On average, Blue Distinction Centers+ are also 20 percent more cost-efficient than non-Blue Distinction Center+ designated facilities.

Physician leaders of the Weight Loss Surgery Center are Dr. John “Ted” Johnson and Dr. Juozas Zavadzkas, both American Board Certified surgeons. Carteret’s bariatric surgeons demonstrate the willingness to take the extra step by offering free monthly seminars and support groups to ensure that patents are educated and engaged in their overall health.

Patients seeking surgical treatment for severe obesity and its related conditions have a high-quality choice for receiving treatment at a nationally accredited program that meets the highest standards for patient safety and quality of care in the eastern North Carolina region.

In 2017, Carteret Health Care’s Weight Loss Surgery Center was named the first hospital in North Carolina to be awarded The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Bariatric Surgery Certification. The Gold Seal of Approval® is a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to providing safe and effective patient care. Also, Carteret’s Weight Loss Surgery Center was recognized in 2016 and accredited as a comprehensive metabolic and bariatric surgical center under the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP®). This is a joint program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

Brvenik added, “We have an amazing team here who are experts in their specialties including bariatric surgery. They truly care about our community and patients and want to help them live the happiest, healthiest life possible.”