The First Surgical Obesity Center In Asia Is Born

Kuala Lumpur 3 March – The Center for Severe Obesity Inc. (CSO), Florida, USA today signs a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with KPJ Healthcare Berhad’s hospital, Damansara Specialist Hospital (DSH) to set up the first obesity surgery center in Asia.

This will be Called “Weight Management Center”, it will be housed at the DSH, in Damansara Utama. The center which will be opened in June 2006 will offer comprehensive treatment for healthy weight management and severe obesity. This is the first of its kind in the Asian pacific region.

The Architect of the deal was Bernhard Schutte, Chairman and chief negotiator of EBM America basted in fort Lauderdale Florida. Signing on behalf of the CSO is the President, Dr Norman Samuels, while DSH is by the Executive Director, Encik Mohamad Sahir Rahmat. The ceremony is witnessed by His Excellency US Ambassador Christopher J. LaFleur.

Also present are the Commercial Counselor of US Embassy, Mr Joe Kaesshaefer, and Dato’ Rosnah Majid, CEO of Electronic Business Management Sdn. Bhd. (EBM).

This signing ceremony is the fruit of the Opportunity Malaysia Trade Mission 2005 from South Florida, organized by Florida District export council and led by Bernhard Schutte of EBM, an international business consultancy company and supported by the Commercial Section, American Embassy, here.

The CSO was one of the mission members that visited Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Kedah from Feb. 27 to March 6 2005. EBM is proud to successfully conclude this deal of the joint venture between DSH and CSO.

The founder of CSO, Dr Samuels, is a renowned obesity surgeon and recognized worldwide as a pioneer in this field. He had performed over 3,000 obesity operations to date. With his clinic based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, he is also a Bariatric Surgeon who specializes in gastric bypass for the treatment of patients who suffer from obesity.

The services at the Weight Management Center in DSH will be supported by a team of surgeons specializing in laparoscopic surgery.

This will be a comprehensive program with the support of numerous other specialists including dietary, psychology and various other physicians and specialists.

The Consultant Surgeons involved are required to receive training in the United States in the surgical procedures and will receive further training in Malaysia. All specialists, nurses and others will be trained by the CSO. The qualified surgeons will then be able to practice in Malaysia under the supervision of Dr. Samuels for the open gastric bypass and Dr. Jorge Sosa for laparoscopic gastric bypass.

“I am very happy with the program provided by DSH and KPJ Healthcare and the enthusiasm of the staff to make this center a reality,” said Dr Samuels at the signing ceremony at DSH today.

“Early last year, when Mr. Schutte approached me to participate in the Opportunity Malaysia Trade Mission 2005 and told me about the opportunity in Malaysia I never thought this will be the result. My wife and I agreed to come just for a vacation,”

“I would like to thank EBM for working hard to put this joint venture together. This Weight Management Center comes at the right time as part of the Malaysian Government’s quest to ensure a healthy nation. ”

“Malaysia will be a good hub for medical tourism in the world market. This center will cater to potential patients from all over the world,” said Dr Samuels.

The CSO was established in 1985 at a time when surgery for obesity was regarded by both the public and the medical profession with a great deal of skepticism. Since that time the obesity surgery has not only acceptable but is being performed world wide in most developed countries and has been shown to be effective and safe for those individuals who are severely overweight.

KJP Healthcare, now the largest private healthcare group in the country with a network of 18 hospitals in Malaysia, Indonesia and Bangladesh and is listed on the main board of Bursa Malaysia. KPJ Healthcare has a 25-year track record in delivering safe quality medical services in Malaysia.

Some of the hospitals under KPJ are Johor Specialist Hospital, Puteri Specialist Hospital and Penawar Hospital in Johor; Ampang Puteri Specialist Hospital and Damansara Specialist Hospital in Selangor; Tawakal Hospital in Kuala Lumpur; Ipoh Specialist Hospital in Perak; Bukit Mertajam Specialist Hospital in Penang; Perdana Specialist Hospital in Kelantan; Kuching Specialist Hospital in Sarawak; Seremban Specialist Hospital in Negeri Sembilan; and Damai Specialist Centre in Sabah. Others are United Hospital (Dacca, Bangladesh), RS Selasih (Sumatera, Indonesia), RS Medika Permata Hijau and RS Bumi Serpong Damai (Jakarta, Indonesia).