Find the Support to Succeed at St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss Clinic

Published on 19 October 2012 in Business
Kim Thomas (author)

Kim Thomas


Location(s): St. Francis Sleep Allergy & Lung Institute and St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss

Most people know that many life-threatening diseases can be prevented or even reversed when an extremely overweight individual successfully achieves significant weight loss. Even when one is only moderately overweight, losing those extra pounds can bring benefits of more energy and a higher level of self-confidence. That is why your success is so important to St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss Clinic at the St. Francis Sleep, Allergy & Lung Institute. Under the direction of Dr. Frank Averill and his attentive, professional staff, you can find the medical help, guidance, patient education, encouragement and support that you are looking for at two convenient locations – on S.R. 54 in New Port Richey and at 802 N. Belcher Road in Clearwater.

You may ask why an allergy, lung and sleep medicine facility offers a weight loss program. The answer is easy – they really care about the longterm health and quality of life of each patient at St. Francis Sleep Allergy & Lung Institute. So much so, in fact, that for a limited time, St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss Clinic is offering new patients an amazing value. If you sign up for St. Francis Weight Loss Clinic’s four-week program on or before Friday, November 30, you will enjoy a savings of 80 percent! For only $99, new clients will receive a full medical exam including an EKG, a customized nutritional plan from a certified nutrition specialist, appetite suppressant (if medically appropriate) and three weekly visits (for a total of four if you include the initial) that include private weighins, vitamin B12 shots, and individualized wellness coaching.

The St. Francis team is led by Frank Averill, M.D., J.D., and Rose Averill, the C.E.O., and his wife of 26 years. With more than 25 years of medical experience, Dr. Averill has been practicing medicine in Tampa Bay for over 19 years and his Board Certifications include Sleep Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, Internal Medicine and Critical Care Medicine. Not only does Dr. Averill have extensive medical expertise, he and Rose also have personal experience with the challenges of weight loss and they truly understand the complex issues and struggles involved in losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight. Together, they have lost over 90 pounds and developed St. Francis’ physiciansupervised wellness and weight loss program to help others achieve success and better overall health.

The St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss Clinic is coordinated by Donna Barbas, who is a certified nutritionist, certified wellness coach, and a certified personal trainer, with a degree in Psychology from the University of South Florida.

“What is unique about our program is that it is customized to each individual,” says Donna. “We work with people and try to make it doable for them. My experience as a wellness coach is important because when it comes to maintaining weight loss, a lot of behavioral modification comes into play. We focus on each individual’s strengths and that is what we build on. We provide the structure, coaching, accountability, education and support that our patients need. And I have seen this program literally transform people’s lives.”

Through the weight loss program at St. Francis, many patients have been able to come off of medications for hypertension and even diabetes, learning to control blood sugar through a healthy diet and some have even been able to eliminate insulin shots.

“One patient who had maxed out on oral medication for diabetes was told by her doctor that she would have to start taking insulin shots,” says Donna. “She told her doctor to give her one month and then she came to us for our weight loss program. Within three weeks she was within normal glucose limits and was able to come off of 80 percent of her diabetic medication. Our program works because it is based on real foods that are available at any grocery store. The key is the quality of the food that provides the body with nutrients and antioxidants that we need for energy and optimal health as well as the prevention of over 30 diseases which obesity is linked to.”


This man lost 70 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years

This man lost 70 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years


Many sleep disorders, especially Sleep Apnea, can be caused or made worse by excess weight so it makes sense that Dr. Averill offers his patients a proven weight loss program. Sleep Apnea has a strong association with heart and circulation diseases, such as heart disease and hypertension. When breathing stops during periods of apnea, carbon dioxide levels in the blood increase and oxygen levels drop. This effect triggers a cascade of physical and chemical events that can increase the risk for heart disease and hypertension.

“There are three types of sleep apnea,” says Donna.” Obstructive Sleep Apnea is the most common and severe form and since a typical person with obstructive sleep apnea is overweight, losing weight can possibly improve and reverse this form of apnea.” St. Francis addresses both issues helping some patients to actually get off their CPAP machine.

The weight loss program offers a customized program along with medical supervision. St. Francis also carries a line of weight loss supplements that patients can buy that enhances weight loss the natural way. These supplements are listed in the Physician’s Desk Reference Guide, which is considered the gold standard among physicians. Donna says, “We have a solid program that guides and teaches people to look at food differently and begin the right kind of exercise. We change those who live to eat into those who eat to live and to view food as fuel.”

Excess weight does more than just weigh you down. Risks of obesity include: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, gall bladder disease, arthritis, sleep apnea, respiratory difficulties, and certain cancers such as breast, colon, prostate and uterine cancer.

So if you are ready to make a change and take charge of your health, make an appointment and take advantage of the $99 special that can literally change your life.


This woman lost 30 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years

This woman lost 30 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years


“The key is desire,” shares Donna. “If you want to make a change that will last the rest of your life, you have to own it. We give our clients a nice binder with everything they need to be successful. I make them set goals and write them down – the more specific your goals are, the more apt you are to reach them. Our clients sign a pledge and it really helps them to be accountable. This program is so easy – it’s sticking to a meal plan, it’s exercising, and it’s being prepared. Many times what trips people up is a lack of planning. We teach them how to plan and have prepared snacks for on-the-go so they don’t let themselves become so hungry that they give in to bad choices.”

St. Francis’ website,, is a great resource center for wellness and weight loss with many topics to click on for additional support and encouragement.

St. Francis Sleep, Allergy & Lung Institute and St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss Clinic provides a place where the mind, body and spirit are recognized and honored. Frank and Rose are Christians, a Catholic couple whom have been professed Franciscans for over a decade, and incorporate the St. Francis prayer into their everyday lives and business practices. Dr. Averill says, “St. Francis’ main message was joy.” Both Dr. Averill and Rose incorporate the belief that in helping others, true joy and satisfaction can be obtained in life.

St. Francis Sleep Allergy & Lung Institute and St. Francis Wellness & Weight Loss has two locations: 8133 S.R. 54 in New Port Richey and at 802 N. Belcher Rd. in Clearwater. Please call (727) 447-3000 to make an appointment or visit for more information.

*The patient and any other persons responsible for payment has a right to refuse to pay, cancel payments, or be reimbursed for payments for any other service, examinations, or treatment that is performed as a result of and within 72 hours of responding to the advertisement for the free, discounted fee, or reduced fee service, examination or treatment.

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  • This man lost 70 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years
  • This woman lost 30 lbs and kept the weight off for over three years
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