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Chelsfield Park Hospital

UK hospital becomes IFSO centre of excellence

The surgical team at Chelsfield Park Hospital
Second hospital in UK to achieve accreditation
Achievement "will place BMI Chelsfield Park Hospital on the map"

The South East Weight Loss Surgical Centre in Orpington, Kent, has become the second hospital in the UK to be recognised as an IFSO Centre of Excellence in Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery.

The surgical centre, which is located at the private BMI Chelsfield Park Hospital in the south east of England, achieved the accreditation after the centre and its surgical team, led by consultant bariatric surgeon Shamsi El-Hasani, satisfied the International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity’s Centre of Excellence requirements.

“This accreditation highlights the expertise, experience and dedication of my team to the care of our patients.” Mr Shamsi El-Hasani, consultant bariatric surgeon

These requirements include demonstration of a surgeon’s experience and aptitude, a sufficient caseload, appropriate follow-up, an available multidisciplinary team, and suitable equipment and resources.

“This accreditation highlights the expertise, experience and dedication of my team to the care of our patients,” said Mr Shamsi El-Hasani. “We hope that this accreditation will lend support, both to the South East Weight Loss Surgical Centre and BMI Chelsfield Park Hospital, but also to the field of bariatric surgery itself.”

“Deciding when and where to have surgery can be a difficult choice but this recognition will place BMI Chelsfield Park Hospital on the map as a centre of excellence in the UK and internationally.”

In order to achieve the accreditation, the hospital had to make an investment in equipment and furniture designed for bariatric patients. They also had to demonstrate concern for the patients’ dignity while providing care and support to its bariatric patients.

“Meeting the IFSO accreditation criteria demonstrates our commitment to the highest standards in bariatric patient care,” said hospital executive director Ruth Hoadley. “At BMI Chelsfield Park Hospital we believe that all our patients deserve access to the highest standards of care backed by the highest standards of medical expertise.”

“Many obese patients can feel isolated or anxious but our team aim to support them at every stage of their journey to ensure their decision to undergo surgery has a positive impact on their health, confidence and outward appearance.”

European Centres of Excellence

There are currently 20 IFSO-accredited centres of excellence across Europe. Before the South East Weight Loss Surgical Centre’s accreditation, the only other centre of excellence in the UK was the Spire Manchester Hospital.

Spain and Greece lead the rest of Europe in terms of centres of excellence, with five and four centres holding the accreditation respectively.

The programme was created by IFSO in order to create a gold standard for bariatric centres, judged by the creation of guidelines that could define surgeon's credentials, as well as institutional requirements for safe and efficient management of morbidly obese and patients with metabolic disorders.

Before a centre can be accepted into the programme, the surgeon must requirements including:

  • appropriate certification,
  • training and experience to perform general, gastrointestinal and bariatric surgery,
  • testimonials by mentors as to the surgeon’s ability,
  • a caseload of 25 procedures per year (or 50 cases where adjustable gastric banding is the most common procedure),
  • the ability to perform revisional surgery,
  • and involvement in the training of other surgeons.

Among other requirements, the institution must:

  • ensure that surgeons performing bariatric surgery have relevant training and experience,
  • have consultants in cardiology, pulmonology, psychiatry and recovery available,
  • have a recovery room,
  • have radiology department facilities,
  • have a blood bank and blood testing facilities,
  • have a complete line of necessary equipment,
  • have a written informed consent process,
  • have a digital database of all treatments and outcomes
  • and have a caseload of at least 50 surgical cases per year including revisional cases

The full requirements can be found on the European Accreditation Council for Bariatric Surgery’s website. They were outlined in the May 2008 issue of Obesity Surgery.

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