Our Center

photo: Baptist Weight-Loss Center team of experts [ Patrick Gatmaitan, M.D., bariatric surgeon; Richard Busbee, bariatric director; Jennifer Myers, bariatric nurse; Ashton Wilkins, bariatric dietitian ]

Comprehensive Care

The Baptist Weight-Loss Center provides a team approach and brings together a range of services to support and assist people undergoing weight-loss surgery. The goal is to help patients improve both their health and their quality of life.


  • Experienced surgeons specializing in gastric bypass procedures
  • Full complement of medical specialists experienced in bariatric care
  • Five-year medical follow-up
  • Clinical staff especially sensitive to the needs of bariatric patients
  • A bi-weekly Pre-operative Education Class that provides information about the surgery, dietary considerations and the recovery process
  • Designated Bariatric Surgical Wing that features specialized equipment and instruments, including scales, beds, chairs and apparel designed with our patients in mind
  • Separate Bariatric Clinic located on the ground floor of Baptist Medical Tower 3 for patient convenience and privacy.
  • Bariatric Nurse Liaison
  • Registered dietician and nutritionist specializing in the needs of bariatric patients. Member of the American Dietetic Association and Weight Management Dietetic Practice Group
  • Pre-surgical nutrition evaluations
  • One-on-one post-operative consultation and follow-up with Registered dietician
  • Psychological services including pre-operative screenings and post-operative counseling
  • Monthly Bariatric Support Group with guest speakers specializing in topics of interest to weight-loss patients
  • Sleep Study Lab

The Baptist Weight-Loss Center is located on the ground floor of Baptist Medical Tower III. To learn more about weight-loss surgery and our services, call 850.437.8746.

Our Team

  • Photo of Patrick Gatmaitan, M.D., bariatric surgeon

    Patrick Gatmaitan, M.D., Bariatric Surgeon

    Dr. Gatmaitan obtained his medical degree in 1999 and graduated Cum Laude. He completed his general surgery residency at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center in Pennsylvania and became board certified in 2007. He then went on to complete a fellowship in Advanced Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgery at Cleveland Clinic, Ohio in 2009. His main interest is in minimally invasive metabolic surgery for the treatment of obesity and its related health problems. He is married to Celine Gisbert, M.D. and the couple are proud parents to four children.

  • Photo of Ashton Wilkins, bariatric dietitian

    Ashton Wilkins, Bariatric Dietitian

    Ashton is originally from Selma, AL. She came to Pensacola two years ago with her husband, and began working at the Baptist Weight-Loss Center. She graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in Nutrition, and went on to Auburn University to receive a master’s in Health Promotion. Ashton has been practicing as a dietitian for four years. Helping others to improve their health and quality of life is her passion, and bariatrics provides the perfect opportunity to do that. Her interests are hiking, running and doing anything outdoors.


Blue Distinction® Center+ Designation
Baptist Weight-Loss Center has received a Blue Distinction® Center+ designation from Florida Blue in the area of bariatric surgery by the Blue Distinction® Centers for Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction® Centers are nationally designated health care facilities shown to deliver quality specialty care based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community, for patient safety and better health outcomes.
Accreditation in the LAP-BAND® Total Care Program
The Baptist Weight-Loss Center continues to add national recognitions to its repertoire with the recent accreditation in the LAP-BAND® Total Care Program – a comprehensive set of clinical and operational best practices designed to optimize outcomes prior to and following LAP-BAND® procedures. A total care program accreditation recognizes the patient-centered and comprehensive team approach the Baptist Weight-Loss Center has taken to bariatric care. This includes patient education; medical assessments; financial requirements; surgery services; and post-procedure follow-up and lifestyle management.
The American Society of Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence Recognition
The Baptist Weight-Loss Center has been recognized by the American Society of Bariatric Surgery as a Center of Excellence. This designation is recognized by many insurance companies for weight loss surgery as it meets the highest standards of quality and safety. To earn a Center of Excellence designation, the Baptist Weight-Loss Center underwent a series of site inspections during which all aspects of the program’s surgical processes were closely examined and data on health outcomes was collected.
The Gold Seal Approval by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
Baptist Hospital Weight-Loss Center has been awarded the Gold Seal Approval by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. Baptist Hospital is fifth nationally, and the only one in our area, to have been awarded the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval as a certified bariatric surgery center. The Gold Seal confirms that Baptist Hospital Weight-Loss Center meets stringent national standards for weight-loss surgery. The Joint Commission is the nation’s leading accrediting and standards-setting body. Its mission is to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public in healthcare settings.


Group Discussion
On the second Tuesday of each month from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., a support group meets. Anyone can attend from those contemplating weight-loss surgery; those who have had weight-loss surgery and any interested family members or friends. Gastric Bypass and LAP-BAND® surgery procedures are both covered. Join us at the Baptist Medical Towers, 1717 North E Street, Avery St entrance in the Medical Meeting Rooms. Family members are encouraged to attend. There is no charge for this forum and reservations are not required. For more information, call us at 850.437.8746.