Public views needed to help shape future specialised surgical services for morbidly obese patients across the North West
Patients, carers and the wider public are being asked to help
develop future services for people requiring specialised NHS weight
loss surgery across the North West.
Specialised commissioners, working on behalf of the region's
primary care trusts, want to hear people's views about the kind of
services which should be offered to people with morbid obesity, and
whether or not certain patients should be prioritised above
They also want to know whether patients undergoing weight loss
surgery (known as bariatric surgery) would be willing to travel
further to have their operation at a centre in the North West, as
long as they could have their follow-up appointments in settings
nearer their homes.
A web-based survey has been set up to encourage people to have
their say. The survey is open until 30th December 2011
and can be accessed via http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NYJ5PX3
The survey is just one of the ways in which commissioners are
gathering views about specialised weight loss surgery in
preparation for a major procurement exercise aimed at developing a
North West surgical service. It is hoped that by carrying out a
region-wide tender, any inconsistencies in patient referrals will
be eradicated, and that patients will have equitable access to the
same high quality care, regardless of where they live.
Commissioners are working closely with clinicians and patient
representatives to develop services in the region, and are
attending a number of patient group meetings which are held
regularly at those hospitals already carrying out specialised
weight loss surgery procedures.
It is expected that new contracts for specialised adult morbid
obesity surgery will begin in October 2012.
Jon Develing, Chief Officer of the North West Specialised
Commissioning Team, said:
"It is really important that we hear from as many people as
possible during this exercise so that, as commissioners of
services, we can better understand the issues which matter to this
specific group of patients, and can seek out prospective service
providers who can meet those needs."