An Update from the ASMBS Integrated Health President

| May 1, 2017 | 0 Comments

This column is dedicated to covering a variety of topics relevant to the multidisciplinary care of the bariatric surgical patient.

Column Editor: Karen Flanders, MSN, CNP, CBN
Winchester Hospital, Winchester, Massachusetts; President, American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Integrated Health

This month: An Update from the ASMBS Integrated Health President

by Karen Flanders, MSN, CNP, CBN, and William Gourash, MSN, CRNP
Karen Flanders MSN, CNP, CBN is from Winchester Hospital, Winchester, Massachusetts.

Funding: No funding was provided.
Disclosures: The authors report no conflicts of interest relevant to the content of this article.

Bariatric Times. 2017;14(5):18–19.

A Message from the Column Editor

Dear Colleague,
I have had a great start to my term serving as ASMBS IH President. Since ObesityWeek 2016, there have been a lot of exciting happenings, including an increased social media prescence via our Twitter account @ASMBSIH and two webinars. This month, I provide a comprehensive update on our past and upcoming initiatives.
I would like to extend a huge thank you to the ASMBS staff, IH Executive Council members, comittees, and members. I could not serve without your continued support and dedication to the advancement of the specialty of metabolic and bariatric surgery.  If you have any comments or concerns you would like to share, please feel free to contact me at [email protected].


Karen Flanders, MSN, CNP, CBN
ASMBS Integrated Health President

What a busy year 2017 has been so far; but with all good things. Let me take this opportunity to update everyone on what has been happening among the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) Integrated Health.

Improved communication has been a major goal of this presidency. In January 2017, an IH Town Hall webinar was held, which included several updates, and highlighted two of the IH committees—the IH Clinical Issues and Guidelines Committee and the IH Support Group Committee. Plans are underway for another IH Town Hall webinar in the early summer.
Integrated Health also held an educational webinar in March 2017 with focus on the 2016 update of the ASMBS Integrated Health Nutritional Guides for the Surgical Weight Loss patient.1 The webinar was hosted by Nate Sann, FNP-BC, MSN, and included presentations by guideline co-authors Julie Parrott, MS, RDN, and Laura Frank, PhD, MPH, RDN, CD. They discussed several of the recommendations within the document, including thiamin, folate (folic acid), iron, and zinc. The ASMBS offered Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and Continuing Medical Education (CME) through Taylor College for this course. A fee of $35 USD is required to claim CME credit for this course; $25 for CEU. ASMBS members may view an archive of the webinar at To view all webinars, visit

The IH Professional Education and Program Committee has been busy planning both the ASMBS Weekend, June 8 to 10, 2017, in San Diego, California, and ObesityWeek 2017, October 29 to November 2, 2017, in Washington, DC. If you are not already registered for ASMBS Weekend, please consider attending.  The program is designed to appeal to members of integrated health.

The IH Clinical Issues and Guidelines Committee has been working on several different projects, both old and new. Some of the new topics include macronutrients, pregnancy, and advanced practice provider guidelines. Documents for the long anticipated IH Tool Kit are completing the approval process and should be available to members in the very near future.
IH Communications Committee has been the driving force behind the webinars and has been actively working to bring the IH Tool Kit to the ASMBS website. Also of note, ASMBS now has an IH presence on Twitter. If you are not already on Twitter, please consider joining and following @ASMBSIH.

The Certified Bariatric Nurse (CBN) Committee is coming up on their 10-year anniversary. Many congratulations to William Gourash, MSN, CRNP, and Jessie Moore, APRN, and the committee for executing this certification, and for maintaining its success. In addition to some changes to the exam, the committee is obtaining new software to assist with the database and renewal process. This will enable a quicker and easier renewal for CBNs. Stay tuned for the CBN newsletter with other significant updates.

The IH Membership Committee continues to grow our membership.  The process has been streamlined to make review and acceptance a quicker and smoother process. The committee continues to explore other benefits and perks for membership.

The Multidisciplinary Care Committee was under the radar while they completed their survey and white paper on the use of the multidisciplinary teams in bariatric surgery programs across the nation. The white paper is undergoing some revisions, but will be available soon.  Plans are underway to submit another survey for Integrated Health on salaries. Please be sure to complete this survey so that we have the most accurate and up-to-date results. The committee hopes to be able to share those results during ObesityWeek 2017.

The IH Support Group Committee has many projects on the table right now. They are currently planning a webinar, conducting a literature search on support groups, and developing a new award for IH Behavioral Health Providers. Please keep your eyes open for the webinar, which is planned for mid to late May 2017.

In other news, we have a new committee—the IH Awards Committee. This committee was formed to ensure transparency in the nomination and selection process of all IH awards, and to resolve any conflict of interest with award recipients. The Nutrition Award and IH Research Award are presented at the ASMBS Foundation Luncheon. The rest of the IH awards will be presented during the IH Town Hall/President Address.The IH Awards Committee is also assisting with the creation of several new awards, including IH Committee of the Year, IH Behavioral Health Provider, and IH Advanced Practice Provider. Current IH awards include IH Circle of Excellence, CBN, IH Research, and Nutrition.

The IH Executive Council is a great team of healthcare providers with some really great ideas. We remain excited for what is to come in 2017.

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Category: Hot Topics in Integrated Health, Past Articles

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