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Please note that the Access to Care Committee is not accepting new member applications at this time. Committee membership is currently by appointment only.

C. Joe Northup, MD FASMBS
Chair & Executive Council Liaison

Margaret Inman, MD ACS

Michael Seger, MD

ASMBS Staff Liaison

Leslie Vinson


Amir Aryaie, MD
Nicholas Brown, MD FASMBS
David L. Chengelis, MD
Tuesday Cook, MD (Diverity & Inclusion Committee Liaison)
Christopher Daigle, MD FRSC
Maher El Chaar, MD
Nina Crowley, PhD RD LD
Wayne English, MD FASMBS, Past Chair

Farah Husain, MD FASMBS
Linden Karas, MD
Colleen Kennedy, MD MBA FASMBS
Walter Lindstrom, Esq
John Morton, MD FASMBS, Past Chair
Fady Moustarah, MD MPH FRCSC 
Blake Movitz, MD
Carl Pesta, DO FASMBS (State Chapters Committee Chair)

Joshua Pfeiffer, MD
Nancy Puzziferri, MD
Nathaniel Sann, MSN CRNP FNP-BC
John D. Scott, MD FASMBS, Immediate Past Chair
Bridget Slusarek, RN
Lloyd Stegemann, MD FASMBS
Dana Telem, MD FASMBS (Insurance Committee Co-Chair)

Regional Super STARS and STARS (State Access to Care Representatives)

Super STAR Northeast Region — Matthew Hutter, MD MPH FASMBS
CT — Darren Tishler, MD FASMBS
MA — Sheila Partridge, MD FASMBS
ME — Jamie Loggins, MD
NH — Robert Catania, MD FASMBS
NY — William O’Malley, MD
RI — Siva Vithiananthan, MD FASMBS
VT — Patrick Forgione, MD
All New New England — Melissa Page, MS RD CSOWM LDN (IH)

Super STAR Mid Atlantic Region — Guilherme Campos, MD FASMBS
DE — Rahul Singh, MD
MD — Joseph Greene, MD MBA
NJ — Michael Bilof, MD FASMBS
NC/SC — Keri Seymour, DO; Nina Crowley, PhD RD LD (IH)
PA — Ann M. Rogers, MD FASMBS
VA/WV — Guilherme M. Campos, MD PhD FACS FASMBS; Nathaniel Sann, MSN CRNP FNP-BC (IH)

Super STAR Southeast Central Region — Brandon Williams, MD FASMBS
AL — Todd Foreman, MD FASMBS
FL — Joseph Chebli, MD FASMBS; Vicky Blackard, RN MBA/HCM CBN (IH)
GA — Renee Hilton, MD
KY — Joshua Steiner, MD
OH — C. Joe Northup, MD; Debra Pasini, RN BSN (IH)
TN — Jenny Weaver, MD

Super STAR Upper Midwest Region — Luke Funk, MD FASMBS
IA — Matthew Christopherson, MD
IL — Juaquito Jorge, MD
IN — Ambar Banerjee, MD FASMBS; Sarah Muntel, RD (IH)
KS — Robert Aragon, MD
MI — Kathryn Ziegler, MD; Colleen Buda, PA-C CSOWM (IH)
MN — Geoffrey Fasen, MD MS
MO — Christopher Eagon, MD FASMBS; Angela Britt, BC (IH)
NE — Gary Anthone, MD FASMBS
WI — Kevin Wasco, MD FASMBS

Super STAR Lower Midwest Region — Robert O. Carpenter, MD MPH FASMBS
AR — Open
CO — Matthew Metz, MD
LA — Peter Lundberg, MD, Laura Boyer, FNP C CBN (IH)
MS — Jennifer O’Flarity, RN BSN
NM — Karina McArthur, MD
OK — Laure DeMattia, DO
TX — Tanyaradzwa Kajese, MD FASMBS

Super STAR Northwest Region — Valerie Halpin, MD FASMBS
AK — Michael Todd, MD
ID — Cory Richardson, MD FASMBS
MT — John Pender, MD
ND — Luis Garcia, MD FACS MBA
OR — Valerie Halpin, MD FASMBS; Melissa Rowan, RN BSN CBN (IH)
SD — Kristin Turek, CNP
WA — Mohan Mallipeddi, MD
WY — Kevin Helling, MD

Super STAR Southwest Region — Ajay Upadhyay, MD FACS FRCS
AZ — Christine Lovato, MD FASMBS; Lauren Pellizzon, MS RD (IH)
CA — Ajay Upadhyay, MD FACS FRCS
HI — Steven Fowler, MD FASMBS
NV — Open
UT — Eric Volckman, MD

Industry AD Hoc Appointed

Ishita Doshi – Ethicon
Juthika Pal – Ethicon
Anuprita Patkar – Ethicon
Maria Thompson – Ethicon
Scott Wolven – Ethicon
Andrew Zebrak – Intuitive Surgical
Santosh Agarwal – Medtronic
Gina Baldo – Medtronic
Michael Morseon – Medtronic
Vincent Zeringue — Medtronic

Joe Nadglowski – Obesity Action Coalition
W. Scott Butsch, MD MSc – The Obesity Society
Pamela Davis – Pamela Davis Consulting
Jeanine Sherman – ProCare Health
Chris Gallagher – Potomac Currents

State Chapter Map


The Access to Care Committee has the principal mission to assist patients affected by metabolic disease and obesity in obtaining appropriate, safe and effective medical care.


The Access to Care Committee has the principal mission to assist patients affected by metabolic disease and obesity in obtaining appropriate, safe and effective medical care. Committee activities include: developing the strategic vision and strategies to make improvement in access to care; advocating for legislative changes on the state and local level that will affect health care coverage; addressing the politics, policies and ethics of access issues on the local, state and national levels; and bringing together initiatives/partners to effectively address access issues.


  • Increase awareness of access issues and progress among public and members
  • Identify reasonable targets for progress in short mid and long term

Committee Goals


  1. Utilize STAR and Super STAR Network more effectively, involving State Chapter Presidents
  2. Support the OAC’s Obesity Care Week March 1-7, 2020
  3. Support the ASMBS Foundation’s Virtual Walk from Obesity
  4. Support our members during the COVID Pandemic


  1. CMS Bundled Payments
  2. Help the OAC build their membership via OAC Patient Advocacy
  3. Monitor insurance companies’ policy updates regarding bariatric surgery


  1. More legislative efforts
  2. Continued tracking of commercial payors and their coverage of bariatric surgery
  3. Maintain the ASMBS Access to Care Facebook page
  4. Assist the ObesityPAC with State Chapter Advocacy Day Grants
  5. Continue efforts to improve State Health Exchange coverage – convert 27 “No” states to “Yes” states
  6. Continue state employee coverage in all 50 states; monitor any new pilot programs
  7. Medicaid Coverage in all 50 States; only Montana remains
  8. Continue support of the passage of the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act
  9. Continue advocacy presence and response to healthcare changes
  10. Continue monitoring and responding to regulatory changes affecting ACA patient protections
  11. Advocacy efforts tracking
  12. Encourage our members to become AMA members
  13. Continue support of our members during the COVID Pandemic
Specific Projects that Achieve Goals and Objectives:


  1. STARs and Super STARs
    a. Contribute regional reports during monthly meetings
    b. OCC All STAR Program was established and is managed by Chris Gallagher
    c. Adding Integrated Health STARs
  2. Participated in March 2, 2020 OAC Advocacy Day
  3. Monthly reminders to members to host a Walk from Obesity
  4. Creation of project to assess commercial insurance coverage
  5. Chair participated in an ASMBS COVID Webinar in April 2020
  6. Wrote a COVID telehealth letter that was sent to insurance Medical Directors of top 25 insurance companies
  7. Committee’s Co-Chair joined the ASMBS Telemedicine Task Force


  1. The committee continues to monitor CMS Bundled Payments
  2. Post cards were sent to all ASMBS surgeon members and are available on the ASMBS and OAC websites for download; members will continue to urge patients to join the OAC
  3. Disseminated news of updated insurance policies to state chapters


  1. We have 144 members on our Facebook page; will continue to use this page as a method to disseminate information to members
  2. Monthly reminders of the ObesityPAC State Chapter Advocacy Day Grants at each meeting; support of members in obtaining these grants
  3. Mid-month Access to Care conference calls with Chair, Co-Chairs, ASMBS Liaison, OAC President, and our Washington Lobbyist to discuss issues that arise in between monthly calls
  4. Monthly Access to Care Committee calls
  5. Continue monitoring and responding to regulatory changes affecting ACA patient protections
  6. Monthly reminders to join the AMA

2020 Completed Projects

  1. Members participated in an ASMBS COVID Webinar in April 2020
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