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Posted 8/5/2023

August 2023 Edition

1. Presidential Messages

Marina Kurian, MD FASMBS and Stephanie Sogg, PhD deliver the monthly Presidential Video Message. Hear about the current state of the Society and upcoming events. 

ASMBS Presidential Message

ASMBS Integrated Health Presidential Message

2. Education & Events

ASMBS OnDemand

ASMBS 2023 OnDemand offers access to 45.25 CME and 41.25 CE content hours conveniently organized by track, presenter, and session so you can find exactly what you’re looking for.

Click Here for pricing and additional information.

CONGRATULATIONS to the 2023 Abstract & Research Award Recipients

2023 John Halverson Young Investigator Award Recipient

Dr. David Funes

Changes in renal blood flow (RBF) in the severely obese a potentially reversible form of renal injury and a possible emerging mechanism for bariatric surgery on chronic kidney disease (CKD)

ASMBS 2023 Research Grant Awards

PI: Tomas Shin, MD, PhD

Co-PI’s: Eric G. Sheu, MD, PhD/Ali Tavakkoli, MD

Spatial Transcriptomics Reveals Oncoprotective Effect of Bariatric Surgery Against Breast Cancer

PI: Andrew Wheeler, MD

Co-PI: Co-PI: Milot Thaqi, MD

Biometabolic Impact of Continuation of GLP-1 Agonists Following Bariatric Surgery: A Randomized Control Trial

2023 IH Top Oral Award Recipients

1st Place: Lisa R. Miller-Matero

Cannabis Use following Bariatric Surgery is Associated with Anxiety and Maladaptive Eating

2nd Place: Kathryn Schlosser, MD

Does the Distressed Community Index Correlate with Adverse Outcomes After Surgery?

Mark your calendars and plan to join us in New Orleans, Louisiana, October 5th – 7th!

ASMBS Weekend is designed for metabolic and bariatric surgeons and integrated health professionals to enjoy vast educational opportunities, networking, exhibits, and symposia without overwhelming crowds.

*Registration and housing information coming soon!* For additional information, contact,

ASMBS Leadership Academy | October 4th – 5th

A unique career development seminar and workshop for bariatric/advanced GI MIS fellows. The program will provide young surgeons with the tools they’ll need to successfully navigate life after fellowship and prepare them to become leaders in their practices, communities, and the field as a whole.

Interested Fellows should contact today to reserve their spot at the 3rd Annual ASMBS Leadership Academy!

LIMITED SPOTS ARE AVAILABLE. RESERVE YOUR SPOT TODAY! The deadline to reserve your spot is: Friday, September 1, 2023.

ASMBS will also host the ASMBS 2023 Weekend Meeting, following the 3rd Annual ASMBS Leadership Academy, on October 4th-5th, 2023, with  reduced registration for fellows.

Upcoming Webinars

3. Committee Updates

IH Compensation Survey NOW AVAILABLE

In an ongoing effort to better understand and identify salary and benefit packages for our members and assist with developing compensation benchmarks, ASMBS has developed an Integrated Health Compensation Survey and is encouraging all members to complete it as soon as possible.

IH Mentorship Program NOW AVAILABLE

Trouble navigating a balance between work and home? Feeling burned out in your career? Want advice on how to improve in your specialty? Want to help contribute to the growth of a less experienced Integrated Health Member? Apply today to the IH Multidisciplinary Care Committee’s IH Mentorship Program to become a mentee or a mentor!

4. Membership News

ASMBS Integrated Health Member Spotlight Coming Soon!

The IH Membership Committee wants to highlight the achievement of IH members. Do you know someone who has started a new job? Anyone who has received a promotion? We want to know! 

The IH Membership Committee will provide details on how to nominate yourself or a colleague for the Member Spotlight. Stay Tuned!

5. Advocacy & Access to Care

Washington State Health Care Authority HTA Program

Bariatric surgery has been selected as one of the technologies that will be re-reviewed by the Washington State Health Care Authority HTA program. Comments can be sent to the HTA program at: Comments are due close of business day on  August 7.

Blue Cross Idaho

 (2.9 million covered lives) revised their policy to include BMI 30+ with type 2 diabetes and added SADI-S to the list of investigational procedures. Revised policy

effective 7.1.2023


(495k covered lives) also revised their policy to include BMI 30+ with type 2 diabetes. Revised policy

effective 7.1.2023

2024 Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS)

CMS has issued the 2024 Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) proposed rule.

In the proposed rule, CMS is proposing to remove sleeve and RYGB procedures from the Inpatient Only (IPO) List.

CMS is soliciting public comments on whether the services are appropriate to be removed from the IPO list.

Please feel free to share this information with your members.  Comments are due to CMS on September 11, 2023. The final rule will be issued in early November.

More Updates!


expanded indications referencing the 2022 ASMBS/IFSO guidelines:

  • BMI 35+ with or without comorbidities
  • BMI 30-35 with one significant comorbidity
  • BMI 27.5+ for Asians with diabetes or metabolic syndrome

BCBS Minnesota:

Expanded coverage to include BMI 30-35 with Type 2 diabetes, with inadequate glycemic control (HbA1c ≥ 8)

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina

Became the first insurance company to cover “One Anastomosis Gastric Bypass using Billroth II gastrojejunostomy with gastric partitioning.”

United Healthcare

(combined their commercial and individual exchange policies into one policy)

Tightened criteria for revisional surgery which includes technical failure (such as bowel perforation, band migration, band removal, leak, obstruction, staple line failure, reflux).  Meaning, inadequate weight loss will no longer be accepted as the sole criteria for revisions.


tightened criteria

  • Added 6-month pre-op weight loss
  • Specified criteria for comorbidities – diabetes requires HbA1c of 8%+ on one or more medications; similar details have been added for hyperlipidemia and OSA. They did expand to include 2 new comorbidities – coronary heart disease and pseudotumor cerebri
  • Banding has been moved to a procedure that’s indicated only when the patient is contraindicated to BPD-DS, RYGB and sleeve

Connecticut Senate Bill 977

Ensures access to obesity care for Medicaid patients in Connecticut with a BMI over 35 and includes both bariatric surgery and medications. Although surgery was already covered, medications were not.

Oregon Health Authority

approved new coverage guidelines for bariatric surgery. Guidelines are:

  • Adults’ BMI of 35 or more, BMI of 30-34.9 with type 2 diabetes and a1c of 8 or more despite two oral medications
  • Coverage for adolescents 13 years of age or older who meet AAP guidelines.
  • Eliminated the 6 months waiting period and the mandatory nicotine and drug testing 6 months apart

Thank you to our industry partner Medtronic for providing this update!

BCBS Alabama

open comment period for draft policy for bariatric surgery:  Policies & Guidelines (

Moda Health

(314k covered lives) revised their bariatric policy to add coverage criteria for adolescents:

Capital Blue Cross

(719k covered lives) revised its bariatric policy and expanded coverage to include:

  1. BMI 35+ with/without comorbidities
  2. BMI 30-35 with at least one comorbidity:
  • Asthma; or
  • Bone and joint diseases; or
  • Cardiovascular disease (e.g. coronary artery disease, heart failure, atrial fibrillation); or
  • Chronic kidney disease; or
  • Dyslipidemia; or
  • Fatty liver disease and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis; or
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD); or
  • Hypertension; or
  • Infertility; or
  • Obstructive sleep apnea; or
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome; or
  • Pseudotumor cerebri; or
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D)
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