Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital Earns Blue Distinction Center+ For Bariatric Surgery

Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital Earns Blue Distinction Center+ For Bariatric Surgery

Guthrie is proud to announce that Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital has been named a Blue Distinction Center+ for Bariatric Surgery by Highmark.

Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated hospitals 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. Quality is key: only those health care facilities that first meet Blue Distinction’s nationally-established, objective quality measures will be considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.

Dr. Mustafa Aman, Director of the Bariatric Surgery Program at Guthrie Weight Loss Center said, “We are proud to receive this national distinction which recognizes the high quality care provided by Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital. The Guthrie Weight Loss Center team is privileged to provide excellent care to treat obesity and obesity-related health conditions, thereby helping our patients live healthier lives. This award highlights our commitment to quality care and the successful outcomes of our patients.”

To receive a Blue Distinction Center for Bariatric Surgery designation, a health care facility must demonstrate success in meeting patient safety measures as well as bariatric-specific quality measures, including demonstrating low complications and low readmission rate for laparoscopic procedures in sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass and adjustable gastric band. A health care facility must also be nationally accredited at both the facility and bariatric program-specific levels.

Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital is proud to be recognized by Highmark BS for meeting the rigorous Blue Distinction Center quality selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

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 American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

“The Blue Distinction program gives Highmark Blue Shield members the ability to choose their Providers based upon reliable quality and safety information. It also provides a pathway for exceptional Providers to demonstrate their value, and delivers the kind of transparency necessary for members to make informed value-driven healthcare decisions. We congratulate our Blue Distinction Specialty Care Providers on their accomplishment and thank our members for choosing Highmark BS”, said Dr. Charles DeShazer, Vice President and Executive Medical Director, Clinical Services, Medical Policy & Quality.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies across the nation have recognized more than 550 health care facilities as Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery. 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.

Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality specialty care in the areas of bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac care, maternity care, knee and hip replacements, spine surgery, and transplants, while encouraging health care professionals to improve the care they deliver. Research shows that, compared to other health care facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients.

For more information about the program and for a complete listing of the designated facilities, please visit

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.