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University of Iowa News Release


April 21, 2008

UI Hospitals and Clinics designated again for bariatric excellence

The UI Obesity Surgery program at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics recently received designation as a United Resource Networks (URN) Bariatric Resource Services Centers of Excellence.

Inclusion in a URN Bariatric Resource Services Centers of Excellence network signals to health care professionals and consumers that UI Hospitals and Clinics meets or exceeds nationally recognized standards of care for bariatric (weight loss) surgery. UI Obesity Surgery is the first program in Iowa to receive this designation.

"This recognition is yet one more indicator of the high quality care our patients receive each and every day," said Isaac Samuel, M.D., director of the UI Obesity Surgery Program. "Our outcomes and low complication rates are consistently among the best in the nation, and we take pride in knowing that a rigorous review process again confirms our excellence."

UI Hospitals and Clinics is also recognized as an American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) Center of Excellence and a Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Iowa Blue Distinction Center for Bariatric Surgery.

Patients with complex, unusual or rare medical conditions have a likelihood of better outcomes when they are diagnosed and treated by medical professionals with the greatest experience and statistically validated clinical expertise.

URN requires that all participating programs in its Centers of Excellence networks complete the evaluation process on an annual basis.

URN Centers of Excellence networks provide value to customers by identifying hospitals and physicians that meet or exceed rigorous performance standards. This information enables consumers and payers to make informed choices and become more engaged in health care decisions. URN is part of OptumHealth, one of the nation's largest health and well-being companies.

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945,