The ASMBS 30th Anniversary

The ASBS is founded

Old ASBS Logo

Original ASBS logo

The American Society for Bariatric Surgery is founded, with the “father of bariatric surgery” Dr. Edward E. Mason at the helm.

First Duodenal Switch Procedure


The first biliopancreatic bypass combined with a duodenal switch procedure is performed by Douglas S. Hess, MD.

First annual Edward E. Mason Founders Lecture

H. William Scott

photo: Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Titled “A Tribute to Edward Eaton Mason,” this lecture was presented by the late Dr. H. William Scott, Jr., pictured here.

Allied Health becomes a formal committee

Allied Health (now the Integrated Health System) holds a round table discussion that includes nurses, a psychologist, a program director, dietitians, and an operating room technician, with the goal of gathering information about best practices and ways to improve patient care.

Obesity Surgery adopted as the Official Journal of the ASBS

Obesity Surgery cover image

Obesity Surgery is adopted as ASBS’s Official Journal. The journal now continues as the Official Journal of the International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders.

NIH Guidelines published

NIH Logo

The National Institute of Health (NIH) publishes a Consensus Statement on “Gastrontestinal Surgery for Severe Obesity”

First Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass performed


photo: Wittgrove Bariatric Center

First laparoscopic gastric bypass is performed by Dr. Alan Wittgrove in San Diego, California.

Dr. Wittgrove later served as ASBS president in 2003.

ASBS Foundation is created

The ASBS Foundation is established by the ASBS Executive Council and spearheaded by Dr. Ross Fox. The Foundation was established to provide fundraising through charitable gifts and public and private donations to support obesity awareness, understanding, and research.

Allied Health becomes a section of the ASBS

First laparoscopic duodenal switch performed

Michel Gagner

photo: International Bariatric Club

Michel Gagner, M.D., performs the first laparoscopic duodenal switch at Mount Sinai Hospital, New York.

First Circle of Excellence Award is given

The first Circle of Excellence award is given to George Cowan, MD. The award is given out annually to recognize outstanding ASMBS members who have made contributions to the Integrated Health Sciences Section.

ASBS Corporate Council is created

The ASBS Corporate Council is created to develop and enhance the joint efforts of bariatric surgeons, healthcare professionals and industry professionals.

First Walk From Obesity takes place

Walk From Obesity logo

The first nationwide Walk From Obesity is organized and directed by Bryan G. Woodward. Today, there are more than 70 Walk sites in the U.S.

ASBS awards its first research grants

ASBS awards its first research grant to Paul Cunningham, MD. The ASMBS Foundation continues to provide grants to augment obesity research.

First COE is credentialed

The first Bariatric Center of Excellence (COE) is credentialed by ASMBS.

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announces national coverage policy for bariatric surgery


CMS announces coverage for bariatric surgery, making the procedure available nationwide for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries

Read CMS National Coverage Determination on bariatric surgery.

International Diabetes Surgery Summit held in Rome

The first International consensus conference on the role of bariatric and gastrointestinal operations in treating type 2 diabetes convenes. The meeting is endorsed by ASMBS along with several European, North American, and International organizations.

Read a statement about the conference by former ASBS president Phil Schauer, MD

First Certified Bariatric Nurses designated

The Certified Bariatric Nurse (CBN) program is established for nurses who have at least two years experience caring for morbidly obese and bariatric surgery patents and pass the CBN examination.

Membership votes to change society name


The new ASMBS logo following the society’s name change.

The Society was renamed the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, to reflect the mounting clinical evidence of the effectiveness of surgery on metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes.

ASMBS holds first international CME course

ASMBS Foundation launches Operation M.O.R.E.


The ASMBS foundation introduces Operation M.O.R.E., a fundraising campaign which has raised to date over $900,000 to fund educational programs and research projects.

Obesity Care Continuum Formed

A partnership between ASMBS, The Obesity Society(TOS), and the American Dietetic Association(ADA) forms the “Obesity Care Continuum,” to pool the resources of its member groups and better coordinate federal and state advocacy. With a combined membership of over 100,000 patient and healthcare professional advocates, the OCC is a major force in the continuing debate over critical need to both prevent and treat obesity.

American College of Surgeons and ASMBS announce Unified National Accreditation Program

ACS Seal

The American College of Surgeons and ASMBS announce plans to combine their accreditation programs into a single, unified program: The Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP).

See the joint press release from ASMBS and ACS

American Medical Association officially recognizes obesity as a disease

AMA Logo

The American Medical Association officially recognizes obesity as a disease during its annual meeting.

ASMBS and The Obesity Society join together to host ObesityWeek 2013

obesity-week-logo (1)

ASMBS and The Obesity Society combine their annual conferences for the first time into ObesityWeek, presenting a comprehensive agenda on obesity studies.