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RUMC’s Bariatric and Metabolic Institute Achieves National Accreditation

April 20, 2021

Institute Recognized for High Quality, Patient-Centered Care, Only Accredited Center on Staten Island Treating Adolescents

April 19, 2021 – Richmond University Medical Center’s Bariatric and Metabolic Institute (BMI), founded in 2018, has achieved national accreditation from the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP). The center met all MBSAQIP criteria established to deliver safe, high quality metabolic and bariatric care for obese patients, including those under the age of 18. The MBSAQIP is a joint quality program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). The three-year accreditation also makes RUMC”s BMI the only center of its kind on Staten Island certified to treat adolescent patients.

“Since it first opened its doors, our Bariatric and Metabolic Institute has been changing lives for the better and giving so many people a new lease on life,” president and chief executive officer, Daniel J. Messina, PhD, FACHE, said. “This national accreditation, with the specific certification to also treat adolescents, solidly affirms to anyone seeking weight loss surgery that Richmond University Medical Center provides consistent, patient-centered care of the highest quality, right here on Staten Island.”

The MBSAQIP criteria ensure that metabolic and bariatric patients receive multidisciplinary medical care, which improves patient outcomes and long-term success. RUMC’s BMI offers preoperative and postoperative care designed specifically for patients with obesity. To earn MBSAQIP accreditation, RUMC’s BMI met the essential criteria for staffing, training, facility infrastructure and patient care. After applying for MBSAQIP accreditation, the BMI underwent an extensive site visit by bariatric experts who reviewed the center’s structure, processes, and clinical outcomes data.

“The Bariatric and Metabolic Institute at Richmond University Medical Center is committed to providing comprehensive surgical care to patients who qualify for weight loss surgery,” Dr. Alex Barkan, vice chair of surgery and director of the BMI, said. “We have a dedicated and compassionate team that guides patients through the extensive medical process from beginning to post-op, and beyond.  Now as an accredited center designated by the MBSAQIP, our reputation as a premiere provider of care for patients seeking weight loss surgery, has been solidified.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 93 million adults in the United States are affected by obesity and that number continues to grow. Obesity increases the risks of morbidity and mortality because of the diseases and conditions that are commonly associated with it, such as Type II diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Obesity has also been attributed to causing more severe symptoms and longer recovery periods in COVID-19 patients. According to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, currently 1 in 4 Staten Island adults is obese, and more than 1 in 3 adults are overweight. Metabolic and bariatric surgery has proven to be effective in the reduction of comorbid conditions related to obesity. Working together, both the ACS and the ASMBS have developed accreditation standards for metabolic and bariatric surgery to better assist patients with obesity in identifying centers, like RUMC’s BMI, that provide optimal patient care.

Established in 2018 by Dr. Barkan, RUMC’s BMI provides a diverse range of surgical and support services, including sleeve-gastrostomy and gastric bypass, all provided by a highly trained and experienced medical staff. Post-surgery, the BMI offers support groups to help ease the surgical recovery process by connecting patients with others who have shared similar experiences with obesity and bariatric procedures. RUMC’s BMI can be contacted at 718-818-4020 and has offices at 1161 Victory Boulevard and 4434 Amboy Road. To find out more about services at the BMI, visit


Richmond University Medical Center is a not-for-profit healthcare provider serving the ethnically diverse community of Staten Island and its neighbors. The medical center provides premier-quality patient care through a full spectrum of emergent, acute, primary, behavioral health and educational services. RUMC does this in an environment that promotes the highest satisfaction among patients, families, physicians and staff. For more information call 1-718-818-1234 or visit Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) is a scientific and educational organization of surgeons that was founded in 1913 to raise the standards of surgical education and practice and to improve the quality of care for surgical patients. Its achievements have placed it at the forefront of American surgery and have made the College an important advocate for all surgical patients. The College has more than 82,000 members and is the largest organization of surgeons in the world.

The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) is the largest organization for metabolic and bariatric surgeons in the world, with more than 4,200 members. It is a not-for-profit organization that works to advance the science of metabolic and bariatric surgery. The ASMBS is committed to educating medical professionals and the lay public about metabolic and bariatric surgery, including the associated risks and benefits, as a treatment option for obesity.