Norman Regional Health System

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Journey Clinic’s bariatric program is excited to celebrate 21 years of life-changing care. Since its inception, the program has helped thousands of people transform their lives and improve their health through medical and surgical weight loss.

If you have ever been to a Journey Clinic anniversary party, you know that patients come back to celebrate another year of the program. It’s unlike other clinics in the sense that Journey Clinic patients tend to form an emotional bond with the program and providers. It really is a “Journey Clinic family.”

“When you can help a patient transform their health and their life, their outlook, it’s a big impact. The nature of what we do changes the way that we have long-term relationships with our patients,” said Lana Nelson, DO, a bariatric surgeon at Journey Clinic.

“It also changes the way that our staff interacts with patients because our staff see patients go through that transformation as well. It’s an incredibly rewarding job to have when you work with patients who are so incredibly appreciative of the second chance they have been given. When you see patients who are able to move better, spend time with their kids, go to the gym again, its’ very impactful for both clinic staff and patients and I think that’s why we do have that familial relationship with them.”

Improving over the years

The success of the Journey Clinic Bariatric Program over the past 21 years can be seen in the many positive outcomes and testimonials from its patients. Many people who have received treatment at Journey Clinic have reported significant weight loss, improved health and quality of life, and increased confidence and self-esteem.

“The most important way that our program and bariatric surgery as a whole has changed is in the way that we have improved our outcomes,” said Dr. Nelson. “When I came to the program in 2005, the reported mortality rates with bariatric procedures were as high as one in fifty. Now for most patients, it’s going to be one in one-thousand. So we have made massive improvements in safety and outcomes.”

Part of Journey Clinic’s success over this time period has also come from their work to re-frame the way that obesity is perceived.

“Through that entire time, we have also worked to improve the patient experience and education. A lot of our education is aimed at helping patients understand obesity as a disease process because many people don’t see it as a disease that you have to manage long term.”

What makes bariatric surgery and medical weight loss different from other medical services is that the impact on the patient’s life is twofold. Not only is there a profound positive change in physical health, but a successful patient story usually also comes with a profound mental impact as well. That’s what makes Journey Clinic different. Or at least one aspect of it.

“Mental health has always been a part of the modern day bariatric program, but we have taken it a step further and brought a therapist into our program,” said Dr. Nelson. “It has been incredibly helpful for perioperative and long term support for patients who are struggling.”

The team at Journey Clinic is dedicated to providing the highest quality care to their patients, with a focus on safety, comfort, outcomes and seeing patients as people. The mission of Journey Clinic has never been about just providing surgical and medical weight loss services, but rather to improve lives. This mindset trickles down into every component of Journey Clinic from the surgeons to the desk staff.

21 years is a long time and it drives home the fact that Journey Clinic is, and has been, an established weight loss clinic that won’t be going anywhere any time soon.

If you are curious about Journey Clinic services and would like to learn more, call 405-515-2049 or request an appointment here.