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Those welcome to attend our bariatric support groups:

  • Bariatric surgery investigators seeking information and the “real story”
  • Pre-op patients waiting for bariatric surgery
  • Early post-op patients or “newbies”
  • Long-term veteran patients to support others and just checking in
  • Back-on trackers seeking to re-lose pounds
  • Friends or family members
  • Professionals (medical or other)

Our live, interactive support group through Zoom is for individuals who are having or have had metabolic and bariatric surgery (MBS) at UF Health Shands in Gainesville, Florida. If you would like to attend and are not currently part of our weight loss surgery program, please contact Gwen Crispell via email

The sessions will not be recorded, so you must attend at the scheduled time to participate. Each meeting will offer an educational topic followed by an opportunity for patients to share their success and pitfalls with fellow attendees. There is no charge for attending the meeting, but registration and approval is required.

Please register by 3 m. the day of the meeting. Once the meeting has started, registration approval is closed.

Support group meetings are currently offered once a month. Studies show improved outcomes for individuals attending support groups than those who choose not to attend. Each meeting will offer an opening topic of relevance to attendees, including presentations by guest speakers. Registration is required prior to each meeting. Meetings are open to patients in the UF Health Bariatric Surgery Program. Contact Gwen Crispell, MSN ,RN, CBN, for further information.

Office: (352) 265-0111 x29634

You may also want to check out OCEANS, the adolescent support group.

Upcoming meeting dates and times


  • 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. every third Thursday of the month.

Dates and topics

  • 1/18/24: "New Year: New Mistakes to Make... Last Year's Mistakes Were Sooooo 2023"
  • 2/15/24: "The Psychology Power Hours"
  • 3/21/24: "Ask the Surgeons and Bariatric Team Anything"
  • 4/18/24: "Understanding Your Senses, Appetite, and Cravings"
  • 5/16/24: "Dental Care After Surgery"
  • 6/20/24: "Body Sculpting and Plastic Surgery"
  • 7/18/24: "The Psychology Power Hour"
  • 8/15/24: "Vitamin and Mineral Needs and the Latest Supplement Trends"
  • 9/19/24: "Strategies and Tips for Long-Term Success"
  • 10/17/24: "Eating with a Crowd and in Social Situations"
  • 11/21/24: "The Psychology Power Hour"
  • 12/19/24: "How to Spice Up Your Food Choices"

Please contact UF Health Bariatric Coordinator Gwen Crispell, MSN, RN, CBN, for further questions, concerns or topics of interest at or (352) 265-0111 x29634.