Freeman News

Freeman Bariatric Center Achieves National Accreditation

December 22, 2017

Program Meets National Standards for Patient Safety and Quality Care

Freeman Bariatric Center has been accredited as a Comprehensive Center under the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP®), a joint program of the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. The first and only bariatric program in the area to be accredited, Freeman Bariatric Center meets the highest standards for patient safety and quality of care.

”This accreditation signifies that the medical and surgical teams that work with patients affected by morbid obesity are highly-trained to offer personalized service and state-of-the-art care,” said Dr. Brad Coy, Freeman Bariatric Center Medical Co-director and board-certified general surgeon. “Our program provides patients with great outcomes, and complete and comprehensive services not only to lose weight, but also make a lifestyle change to keep the weight off. That was the goal of the program all along.”

Studies show patients have better weight-loss surgery outcomes in accredited bariatric surgical centers, which have undergone and passed rigorous evaluation in accordance with nationally recognized bariatric surgical standards. Accredited centers are also recognized for multidisciplinary teams with experts in areas such as nutrition and psychology to ensure a patient’s success after surgery.

“Patients have always and will continue to receive safe, compassionate, efficient care when they choose our program,” said Dr. David Baker, Freeman Bariatric Center Co-medical Director and board-certified general surgeon. “They know Freeman has all of the expertise, resources and personnel to deliver the best possible care.”

To earn the MBSAQIP designation, Freeman met essential criteria for staffing, training and facility infrastructure and protocols for care, ensuring its ability to support patients with severe obesity. The center also participates in a national data registry that yields semiannual reports on the quality of its processes and outcomes, identifying opportunities for continuous quality improvement. Accredited centers also ensure bariatric surgical patients receive multidisciplinary care, not just a surgical procedure, which improves patient outcomes and long-term success. Accredited centers offer preoperative and postoperative care designed specifically for severely obese patients.

According to the National Institutes of Health, approximately 15.5 million people in the United States suffer from severe obesity, and the numbers continue to increase, especially among children. In a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers at Harvard estimate nearly six in 10 children in the U.S. will be obese by age 35. The projection was determined using thousands of children’s current heights and weights.

Obesity increases the risks of morbidity and mortality because of the diseases and conditions commonly associated with it, such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Metabolic and bariatric surgical procedures may help reduce the risk of developing such chronic conditions.

Freeman Bariatric Center offers free seminars on bariatric weight-loss surgery the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. The seminars take place at the Freeman Business Center Conference Rooms, 3220 McClelland Blvd., Joplin, Mo. Registration begins at 4:30 pm. To RSVP, call Janice at 417.347.1266.

About Freeman Health System
Locally owned, not-for-profit and nationally recognized, Freeman Health System includes Freeman Hospital West, Freeman Hospital East, Freeman Neosho Hospital and Ozark Center – the area’s largest provider of behavioral health services – as well as two urgent care clinics, dozens of physician clinics and a variety of specialty services. For 2018, Freeman earned dozens of individual awards for medical excellence and patient safety from CareChex®, a quality rating system that helps consumers evaluate healthcare providers. The Leapfrog Group awarded Freeman the highest grade possible in the Fall 2017 Hospital Patient Safety Score. With more than 300 physicians on staff representing more than 70 specialties, Freeman provides cancer care, heart care, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopaedics, children’s services and women’s services. Additionally, Freeman is the only Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in a 70-mile radius. For more information, visit