ASMBS Quality and Standards Committee Overview

ASMBS Quality and Standards Committee  Overview

The Quality and Standards Committee was formed in February of 2011 to conduct ongoing review of the ASMBS Bariatric Surgery Centers of Excellence (BSCOE) program. Robin Blackstone, MD, was appointed chair and Barry Inabnet, MD, Co-chair.  The committee was structured to provide wide representation of the society membership (click here for a full list of committee members). In addition, two special subcommittees were formed.  The Rural Subcommittee, led by Wayne English, MD, was formed to address the specific challenges in achieving accreditation in a rural, small volume program or new program environment. The second subcommittee was developed to allow a scientific calculation of the numbers of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (MBS) procedures that take place annually, led by Anita Courcoulas, MD.  Finally, a taskforce of surgeons representing ASMBS, SAGES and ACS was established to develop joint recommendations for credentialing in MBS, led by Barry Inabnet, MD.

ASMBS committees transition membership in January of each year and Robin Blackstone, MD, rotated off as chair of the committee, Barry Inabnet, MD, accepted the chair position and Raul Rosenthal, MD accepted as co-chair for the 2013-2105 term.


The first two years of this committee were extremely productive.  The primary accomplishments of the committee are listed below.

  1. Transitioned the ASMBS BSCOE program into a unified program with the American College of Surgeons (ACS) charged with creating one standard for accreditation in Bariatric Surgery:  The Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program
  2. Developed a rationale for transition from volume based to outcomes based standards for accreditation
  3. Established a Rural Subcommittee to incorporate rural, new or small volume programs and pathways to quality through process outside of volume
  4. Identified the former ACS BSCN data registry as the new joint data registry for the unified program.
  5. Developed educational offerings for annual meeting around quality reporting.
  6. Communication with membership around the transition to MBSAQIP



The mission of the Quality and Standards Committee is to:

  1. Maintain oversight of the BSCOE program with regular reports to the Executive Council of ASMBS for the life of the program.
    Until the MBSAQIP Standards are finalized, the ASMBS BSCOE Committee remains an active group responsible for maintaining the accreditation of the existing COE programs and the advancement of probationary and provisionally approved programs to full COE status when they have met the criteria.
  2. Develop and oversee the National/Regional and State ASMBS Collaboratives and help develop infrastructure with payors to support the collaborative effort.
    The development of nationwide collaboratives to advance quality is a key responsibility of this committee.
  3. Provide society oriented feedback to the committees of MBSAQIP
  4. Promote communication and understanding between the ACS and ASMBS in quality and safety in bariatric surgery.
    Representatives from this committee and/or the Executive Council are now holding regular face-to-face meetings with the leadership at ACS to keep lines of communication open and to facilitate advancement of the program.
  5. Manage interaction with payors at the discretion of the executive committee.
    Jaime Ponce, MD, ASMBS president, as well as other officers of the ASMBS, have been holding conference calls with all the key players to discuss the proposed changes to the quality program.  The discussions held to date have been a very open exchange leading to better understanding by all parties.

Committee Goals:

  1. Serve as part of the communication conduit to educate members about the new MBSAQIP accreditation standards
  2. Oversee the development of the National, Regional and State ASMBS Quality Improvement collaboratives
  3. Work directly with payors to gain acceptance of outcomes based accreditation in MBS
  4. Finalize the recommendations for credentialing in adult and adolescent MBS.
  5. Standardize the ICD9 and CPT codes for bariatric complications/procedures working with Insurance committee and begin to translate this into the data registry
  6. Standardize the ICD10 and CPT codes for conversions and revisions and begin to work with the MBSAQIP data registry committee to translate those items into the data registry
  7. Identifying surgeon site visitors for the MBSAQIP and ASMBS BSCOE program while operational
  8. Develop educational offerings for annual meeting around quality
  9. Develop in collaboration with IFSO and the international chapters, an international certification program in Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery
  10. Participate as requested by the EC in maintaining and strengthening relationships with payors


Committee Objectives:

  1. Develop a network of state based collaboratives throughout the United States.
  2. Oversee the ASMBS BSCOE program through administration of the Bariatric Surgery Review Committee for the life of the program (sundown when all programs have transitioned as an accredited center into MBSAQIP)
  3. Return BOLD data to registered users through March 31, 2012 in a format that may be utilized by the programs and develop a Public Use File for participants.

Future Plans:

  1. Develop an international global network of certified centers for metabolic and bariatric surgery
  2. Conduct an Annual Survey of membership to determine satisfaction with service and quality of the MBSAQIP program beginning in 2014.


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The official journal of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery