News and Trends—July 2010

| July 22, 2010

IRVINE, California—Allergan, Inc., makers of the LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System, announced the launch of a new national public awareness and advocacy campaign called C.H.O.I.C.E. (Choosing Health over Obesity Inspiring Change through Empowerment), which advocates for consumers, healthcare professionals, and Congress to work together to successfully address the obesity epidemic through a dual focus on prevention and treatment.
The campaign calls for greater understanding and recognition that obesity is not a choice self selected by those struggling with excess weight, but rather a serious disease that remains the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States, second only to smoking, and as such requires the same national attention and urgent treatment as other serious diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.  Through a range of initiative, the C.H.O.I.C.E. Campaign will drive and encourage dialogue and action among communities, members of the media, and Congress to change how America views obesity and raise awareness of the critical need for greater access to and acceptance of all effective treatments to fight obesity, including weight-loss surgery for those individuals who are severely obese.
2010 C.H.O.I.C.E. Initiatives

The cornerstone of the C.H.O.I.C.E. Campaign is to provide a national platform for all people—consumers, caregivers, advocacy groups, healthcare professionals, medical societies, and members of Congress—to learn the facts about obesity, spread the word, and actively participate in the campaign to call for greater awareness and action on both a federal and state level. People wanting to join the fight against obesity and contribute to easing the burden on our healthcare system can become involved in initiatives taking place throughout 2010, and further described on the C.H.O.I.C.E. website,
1.    Petition to Congress—Sign an online petition asking Congress to acknowledge that while preventative measures, such as diet and exercise, are critical strategies for combating obesity, they alone cannot resolve the obesity epidemic. The campaign’s goal is to secure 250,000 signatures to represent Allergan’s $250,000 donation to The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services’ Department of Health Policy in support of its Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance.
2.    Facebook Cause—Similar to the online petition, the campaign’s goal is to have 250,000 people join the Facebook Cause, to show that together the voice of 250,000 can make a difference in the battle against obesity.
3.    Twitter—Stay up to date by following the campaign on the C.H.O.I.C.E. Twitter page at @CHOICEcampaign. Tweet about the C.H.O.I.C.E. Campaign and become a public advocate fighting against obesity.
4.    Voice My C.H.O.I.C.E. Contest Program—For individuals who have struggled for a lifetime with obesity and found help through weight-loss surgery, they can explore entering the Lap-Band® System Patient Contest Program. For information about the Voice My C.H.O.I.C.E. Contest Program, including rules, submission criteria and to enter, visit www.LapbandChoice
5.    Social Media Tools—To become actively involved, go to for links to join the Facebook Cause, campaign-related tweets for supporters to use on their own Twitter pages, information to share on blogs and wallpapers/banners/icons to lend and show support for the campaign.

To learn more about the C.H.O.I.C.E. Campaign and the many ways to become actively involved, go to

The Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America raises awareness and funds to help patients with obesity

Gold River, California—The Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America is raising awareness and funds to help individuals with morbid obesity who lack the insurance coverage or ability to self pay have a better chance of getting weight loss surgery.

The foundation was created by Antonia Namnath on April 26, 2010. For more information about The Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America, or to make a donation towards the mission to end obesity through bariatric surgery, please visit


CINCINNATI, Ohio—Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. (EES) introduced a new addition to its Harmonic® line of surgical devices, the Harmonic Ace® 45 cm Curved Shears. Harmonic Ace 45 cm, designed to extend the reach of surgeons for minimally invasive procedures involving obese patients, is 25 percent longer (or 9cm) than the standard length Harmonic Ace device. The additional length of the Harmonic Ace 45 cm enables surgeons to reach anatomy during procedures on obese patients while reducing the need to relocate trocars. The Ace 45cm also reduces the need to push down on patients’ abdomens, enabling surgeons to rotate the jaws of the device without impacting the trocar. The Harmonic Ace 45cm, which is being introduced at the annual meeting of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), is primarily intended for use in bariatric, general, colorectal and gynecologic laparoscopic surgeries for obese patients, including gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, colectomy, and hysterectomy.

In addition to the new ACE 45cm Harmonic device, EES also provides 45cm advanced bipolar devices (Enseal®) with the additional length ideal for the obese patient population.
EES provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy products to meet the unique needs of surgeons and individual patients. Harmonic allows precise application of ultrasonic energy in advanced laparoscopic and open procedures, and minimizes tissue damage to the patient. The EES Energy portfolio also includes the Enseal advanced bipolar devices that give surgeons control in tissue, sealing larger vessels while minimizing tissue trauma. Using controlled temperature technology not available in any other bipolar device, Enseal devices offer minimal thermal spread for simultaneously sealing and transecting large vessels up to and including 7mm and tissue bundles.

More information can be found at

Novation Bariatric Report Demonstrates Caring for Obese Patients Continues to Present Challenges for America’s Hospitals

IRVING, Texas—Novation, a healthcare supply contracting company, released its 2010 Bariatric Report, a nationwide survey of VHA Inc. and University HealthSystem Consortium (UHC) member hospitals. The results confirm that caring for the obese patient population continues to be challenging for hospitals and healthcare providers, especially as they deal with increasing demands, lower reimbursements, and an increased focus on quality in light of healthcare reform.

More than 48 percent of the respondents saw an increase in admissions of patients with morbid obesity since 2008, while 13 percent saw a significant increase.
To view the complete survey, please go to


Category: News and Trends, Past Articles

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