After a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Lompoc Valley Medical Center’s (LVMC) bariatric surgery support group is again meeting in person.

The support group gets together from 5-6 p.m. the first Wednesday of the month. Each session includes a presentation by either program coordinator M. Cristina Ortega, RN; licensed clinical social worker Christine McReynolds; or registered dietitian Hayley Esdaile.

The group is for people who have had bariatric surgery or are considering the procedure. Masks and social distancing are required. Participants will be screened at the LVMC front entrance for COVID-19 symptoms. Virtual log-in remains available for those unable to attend in person.

Upcoming dates and program topics are:

April 7 — Coping with Emotional Changes after Bariatric Surgery,  led by McReynolds.

May 5 — Nutrition Supplements, moderated by Esdaile.

June — Eating for Life led by Ortega.

Topics for following months include Overcoming Self-Sabotage; Predictors of Weight Regain after Surgery; and Your New Relationship with Food.

The support group is free of charge and registration is not required. Family members or support team members are welcome to attend. For more on upcoming topics, see the “events” tab under Patient Resources at

LVMC’s Bariatric Surgery Program is led by Weight-loss Surgery Program director Dr. Farida Bounoua; and assisted by Dr. Christopher Taglia.

Required medical exams and evaluations are completed at Lompoc Health facilities. Surgeries offered at LVMC are the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass or laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy.

For more information, or to receive log-in details, contact Ortega, 805-737-3382. LVMC is at 1515 E. Ocean Ave.