Clovis Community best in state; top 5% in nation

The Bariatric (weight-loss) Surgery Program at Clovis Community Medical Center is ranked the best in California according to a report released in November by HealthGrades, an independent health-care ratings organization.

HealthGrades’ findings report the Bariatric Surgery Program at Clovis Community is the only five-star rated provider in the Valley and the only hospital in California to rank in the top 5% in the nation for bariatric surgery.

In addition to the top-rung HealthGrades ranking, the American College of Surgeons, Surgical Review Corporation, Blue Cross of California and Health Net all have designated Clovis Community’s Bariatric Surgery Program as a “Center of Excellence” for bariatric surgery.

HealthGrades analyzed surgical complications data from 2002, 2003 and 2004 and found that not only were the surgical outcomes at Clovis Community better than statistically expected, they were the best in the state.

The report is titled “Bariatric Surgery Trends in American Hospitals Study,” and the ratings are published on the HealthGrades consumer Web site.

“The central finding of the study is that the quality of bariatric surgery varies widely from hospital to hospital,” said Dr. Samantha Collier, HealthGrades’ vice president for medical affairs. “So it’s important for people to know that Clovis Community Medical Center had among the lowest complication rates in the nation for bariatric surgery.”

The bariatric program at Clovis Community has built a solid reputation over the years and has drawn patients from across the nation and other countries. Clovis Community Medical Center averages more than 800 inpatient bariatric surgeries a year. That’s more than any other single hospital in the state.

The program’s success is credited to exceptionally talented surgeons and an experienced top-notch clinical staff of more than 20 dedicated specifically to the bariatric program. The physicians who most frequently perform bariatric surgeries at Clovis Community are Dr. Edward Felix, Dr. Dan Swartz, Dr. Kelvin Higa and Dr. Keith Boone.

This story was reported by Mary Lisa Russell. She can be reached at