UHealth in Top Five Percent in Nation for Bariatric Surgery for Seven Years in a Row

Bariatric surgery at UHealth – the University of Miami Health System is among the top 5 percent in the nation, according to a national study by Healthgrades, the leading online resource for comprehensive information about physicians and hospitals. This achievement is part of findings featured in the Healthgrades 2019 Report to the Nation, which found that clinical performance continues to differ dramatically between hospitals regionally and nationally.

Dr. Nestor de la Cruz-Muñoz in clinic.

Every year, Healthgrades evaluates hospital performance at nearly 4,500 hospitals nationwide for 32 of the most common inpatient procedures and conditions, as well as reporting on outcomes in appendectomy and bariatric surgery using all-payer data provided by 15 states and the District of Columbia.

This variation in care has a significant impact on health outcomes. From 2015 through 2017, patients treated at hospitals receiving the Bariatric Surgery Excellence Award have, on average, a 60.3 percent lower risk of experiencing a complication while in the hospital than if they were treated in hospitals that did not receive the award. (Statistics are based on Healthgrades analysis of MedPAR data for years 2015 through 2017 and represent three-year estimates for Medicare patients only.)

“An ongoing commitment to improving the services offered and providing the highest quality of health care is our principal goal,” said Nestor de la Cruz-Muñoz, M.D., chief of the division of laparoendoscopic and bariatric surgery at the University of Miami Health System and associate professor of clinical surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. “Being honored for another year by such a reputable organization as Healthgrades is a privilege we don’t take lightly. The recognition shows we are living up to our commitment to provide the safest and best experiences to our patients.”

University of Miami Hospital and Clinics was also recognized for the following clinical achievements:

  • Five-Star Recipient for hip fracture treatment for three years in a row (2017-2019)
  • Five-Star Recipient for gallbladder removal surgery in 2019
  • Five-Star Recipient for appendectomy for two years in a row (2018-2019)
  • Recipient of the Healthgrades Bariatric Surgery Excellence Award for eight years in a row (2012-2019)
  • Recognized by Healthgrades for superior performance in bariatric surgery for eight years in a row (2012-2019)
  • Among the top 10 percent of hospitals evaluated for bariatric surgery for eight years in a row (2012-2019)
  • Five-Star Recipient for overall bariatric surgery for eight years in a row (2012-2019)

“With so many choices for care, consumers often find that their health journey can be difficult to navigate,” said Brad Bowman, M.D., chief medical officer at Healthgrades. “Information about hospital quality is helpful as they make decisions for their health, and University of Miami Health System has distinguished itself as an exceptional organization for bariatric surgery.”

For its analysis, Healthgrades evaluated approximately 45 million Medicare inpatient records for nearly 4,500 short-term acute care hospitals nationwide to assess hospital performance in 32 common conditions and procedures. Healthgrades then evaluated comparative outcomes in appendectomy and bariatric surgery using all-payer data provided by 15 states and the District of Columbia.

Healthgrades recognizes a hospital’s quality achievements for cohort-specific performance, specialty area performance, and overall clinical quality. Individual procedure or condition cohorts are designated as five-star (statistically significantly better than expected), three-star (not statistically different from expected) and one-star (statistically significantly worse than expected) categories.

The complete Healthgrades 2019 Report to the Nation and detailed study methodology can be found at www.healthgrades.com/quality/.

UHealth’s Division of Laparoendoscopic and Bariatric Surgery is committed to delivering top-notch care by providing patients with the latest technological breakthroughs including minimally invasive alternatives to conventional surgery. The center sees about 400 bariatric patients each year and is one of the largest in the region. The comprehensive program incorporates multidisciplinary expertise from highly skilled doctors and specialists.

Because the Miller School is one of the nation’s top 50 research institutions, bariatric patients also have access to clinical trials for new treatments and surgical devices on the horizon.

For more information on the Bariatric Surgery program at UHealth, click here.