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Society support

BOMSS "warmly welcome" NCEPOD report

Society president describes findings of support as "powerful and much-needed support" for BOMSS' endeavours
Mr Alberic Fiennes, BOMSS president, described the report as "much needed".

BOMSS, the UK’s professional society of bariatric surgeons, have released a statement endorsing the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death’s report into bariatric surgery, backing its call for multi-disciplinary teams and improved pre- and post-operative support.

The report, “Too Lean A Service?” criticised UK bariatric surgery provision, finding that only 32% of bariatric surgery procedures carried out in the country represented good practice.

It also called for professional associations to create a code of conduct for advertisers, preventing them from marketing bariatric surgery as a primarily cosmetic, or “quick-fix”, solution.

Earlier this month, BOMSS released a set of guidelines aimed at improving UK bariatric surgery provision, which included many of the recommendations set out by NCEPOD.

"This report lends powerful and much needed support to our longstanding endeavours to raise quality and to define practice.” Mr Alberic Fiennes, president, BOMSS

Mr Alberic Fiennes, president of BOMSS, said: “BOMSS welcomes the main recommendations made in this report, which lend powerful and much needed support to our longstanding endeavours to raise quality and to define practice, a process supported by the Royal College of Surgeons.”

Fiennes was also a member of the expert group who were appointed to oversee the review that led to the report.

Mr Peter Small, BOMSS council member and an assessor of NCEPOD’s analysis, said: “Surgery is just the central part of a treatment process that must include proper pre-operative preparation and long-term follow-up care. These need to be included in resourcing for the high standard of bariatric care patients should rightly expect.”

BOMSS council member Mr Richard Welbourne agreed, saying that BOMSS was "very keen" to push for the highest possible professional standards. “We recognise that looking after bariatric surgery patients involves a wide range of multidisciplinary care and those who provide this surgery must put all the team members in place so that patients are not left with poor aftercare and are properly supported through their surgical journey,” he said.

While BOMSS do not currently offer their own advertising guidelines, they say that they consider compliance with the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgeons’ rules on advertising as “binding” on its members.

The ASMBS guidelines advise against the use of superlatives or adjectives such as “premier” and “best”, as well as claims of superiority over other surgeons or bariatric centres.

The guidelines say that before and after photos can be beneficial to patients, but must not be misleading; similarly, success stories can be useful in informing patients, but should be associated with clear information about the risks associated with surgery.

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