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    St. John’s Hospitals Center for Surgical Weight Loss Offers Glimpse of Life-Changing Bariatric Procedures

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    St. John’s Center for Surgical Weight Loss (SJCSWL) wants to inform community members of the benefits of bariatric surgery for those that are candidates. As Ventura County’s largest and most established surgical weight loss program, and during this period of New Year’s resolutions, SJCSWL aims to share the benefits of long-lasting weight loss.

    “Diet and exercise may not work for patients that are obese,” said Helmuth Billy, MD, Medical Director of St. John’s Center for Surgical Weight Loss. “Bariatric surgery has proven long term success, best results, and confidence for patients that have gone through our surgical weight loss program.”

    Obesity is defined as 100 pounds above ideal body weight, or a Body Mass Index (BMI) greater than 40. Obesity often leads to other life-threatening medical conditions such as type II diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiac disease, and elevated cholesterol. The benefits of weight loss are improvement in overall health and quality of life, coupled with the elimination of medical conditions brought on by obesity.

    To qualify for bariatric surgery, patients must meet the following criteria established by the National Institutes of Health and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery:

    • More than 100 pounds over your ideal weight
    • BMI of 40 or greater or a BMI of 35-39.9, along with two or more medical conditions such as diabetes and/or hypertension which would improve significantly with weight loss
    • Tried and been unable to lose weight through diet and exercise
    • Prepared to make a lifelong commitment to dietary, exercise and behavioral changes necessary for long-term success
    • No mental or behavioral disorders that may interfere with long-term weight loss success

    St. John’s Hospitals provide comprehensive, individualized care from expert providers to help patients on their weight loss journey. The physical, emotional, and health benefits of weight loss surgery can put life on a whole new path. The accredited SJCSWL program offers a comprehensive approach to care, with support and education from initial contact and beyond recovery, including:

    • Free seminars and patient education
    • Extensive physical and psychological assessments and support
    • Post-operative visits, calls, lab tests, and monitoring
    • Nutritional and lifestyle modification counseling
    • Customized fitness program
    • Personal assistance with navigating insurance coverage
    • Bilingual language assistance (English/Spanish)

    The team of bariatric experts at the SJCSWL offer a comprehensive approach and individualized treatment to determine the best path for each patient. Often a person’s journey to surgical weight loss options begins by research which is why St. John’s Hospitals offers a free, confidential, online weight loss assessment which can reveal the amount of risk a person has based on nutrition, lifestyle and body weight.

    SJCSWL is accredited by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP), a joint program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). SJCSWL has also been designated as a Blue Distinction Center by Blue Shield of California.


    About Dignity Health St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital and St. John’s Regional Medical Center

    St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo and St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard are members of Dignity Health Central Coast, an integrated network of top quality hospitals, with physicians from the most prestigious medical schools, and comprehensive outpatient services – all recognized for quality, safety and service. Both hospitals are supported by an active philanthropic Foundation to help meet the growing health care needs of our communities. Hospitals in the Dignity Health Central Coast region also include Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria. Learn more at and

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