Our team and partner organizations include all of the specialties required to support the bariatric patient throughout their journey. Dr. Edmund Chute and Dr. Raymond Drew are dedicated bariatric surgeons with many years of experience in helping patients achieve excellent outcomes with minimal complications. Dr. Sidney Jones is an endocrinologist with the Ridgeview Specialty Clinics. He provides non-surgical medical consultation for bariatric patients. Our staff includes a dietitian, certified bariatric nurse, exercise physiologist, bariatric program coordinator and physical therapist, surgical assistant and insurance coordinator.
We have partnered with Northland Counseling Services, a group of experienced psychologists, marriage and family therapists and social workers dedicated to providing counseling assistance during life’s difficult challenges. Dr. Hal Baumchen, PsyD, LP, the executive director of Northland, works closely with the Bariatric & Weight Loss Center, providing clinical interviews, assessments and counseling for our patients and leading our Bariatric Support Group.
Ridgeview Medical Center offers a variety of other specialty services that may be required during the pre-operative assessment, including a Sleep Disorders Center, Imaging Services, Endoscopy, and the Minneapolis Heart Institute at Ridgeview Heart Center.
Heidi Pucel, RN, CBN, received her degree in biology and chemistry from Augsburg College in Minneapolis and her degree in nursing from the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul. She is recognized by the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery as a Certified Bariatric Nurse. She is instrumental in phone triage and postoperative management, and she provides follow-up services and gastric band adjustments in the clinic. Heidi assists with education and is interested in clinical nutrition following bariatric surgery.
Cristy Miller, RD, LD, graduated with a bachelor of science degree from Minnesota State University, Mankato, followed by an internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. Cristy provides preoperative and postoperative nutrition education for bariatric patients and is active in the Bariatric Surgery Support Group.
Carol Thurston, MPE, ATC, received her undergraduate degree emphasizing sports medicine from St. Cloud State University and her master's degree in exercise science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She has worked with elite athletes as well as patients with their disease management and exercise including cancer, post-cardiac rehab and obesity. Carol will provide exercise physiology consultations and education, pre- and postoperatively for bariatric patients.
Sally Simcox is our clinical services assistant, scheduling patients and triaging telephone calls five days a week. Sally brings to the clinic the experience of someone who has had a successful gastric bypass surgery (performed by Dr. Drew). Her empathy and enthusiasm help patients feel welcome and understood as they make their journey both before and after bariatric surgery.
Jon Anderson, CST/SA, has been working with Drs. Chute and Drew for more than eight years. He is extremely experienced in assisting in bariatric surgery and has helped with over 2,000 operations for weight loss. He has trained and shared his skills in laparoscopic bariatric surgery with numerous other assistants. His expertise and anticipation of surgical needs allows our surgeons to operate more quickly, safely and successfully.
Katrina Trent, PT, DPT, serves as the Coordinator of the Ridgeview Bariatric & Weight Loss Center. She received her Master of Physical Therapy from St. Catherine University and her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Simmons College in Boston. Katrina helped develop and open the Center for Joint Replacement at Ridgeview in 2007 and is now the Specialty Program coordinator, overseeing both the Joint Center and Bariatric programs. She coordinates the multidisciplinary team efforts in both the clinic and the hospital.
Katy Van Tassell is the insurance coordinator, guiding patients through the many steps required in the preoperative process. Katy is an expert at gathering the appropriate documentation to gain insurance approval for bariatric surgery.
Back to Bariatric Page