"My first impression of Dr. Paya was on this website. I was debating over having Dr. Paya at Northridge Hospital (my hospital of choice) or Dr. Qualici at St. Josephs in Burbank. rnrnAfter talking to a couple of former patients, there were very little discouraging words regarding Dr. Paya's care or office staff. And, best news of all, his office processed patients far sooner than the other option I was given. rnrnFor me, surgical competence is more important than bedside manner, but what is MOST important to me is my ability to contact the office for information. rnrnThe \"guy\" Dr. Paya is friendly, confident, professional and very cute. lol He was honest on how much weight I would lose, and how much weight I COULD lose. He is a busy guy and when I was in the hospital I only saw him pre-op. His associate, Dr. Kokkalera, saw me each day while I was in Northridge Hospital. Dr. Kokkalera is very nice and thoughtful and had a friendly sense of humor. rnrnMy medical group (Facey) has an extensive bariatric surgery preparation procedure, so I don't have a lot of information on what Dr. Paya's office offers. I did meet with a nutritionist with detailed pre-op/ post-op/ maintenance diet information. I met with a Dr. Paya's nurse with a detailed explanation of pretty much every aspect of the process, which included all the \"realities\" of what does/doesn't work with bariatric surgery. Finally, I received a simple psychiatric evaluation from one of NR Hosp's staff psych MDs.rnrnThe office staff was stellar when I was in the hospital. Crystal and Shelly visited me every day at least once. Both doted over me in pre-op, making sure my husband saw me before surgery and having my paperwork for disability processing the minute I was in surgery. They made sure my post-op pain meds were waiting in MY pharmacy for pickup on my drive home!rnrnI would be remiss without mentioning my frustration when someone made my first appointment with Dr. Paya for 4PM, but it was entered in his system for 3:30. I was deemed a \"no show\" and he left before I arrived at 3:43. I was DEVASTATED! Fortunately, Crystal made an appointment for the very next week, so I had my surgery exactly when I was planning...the last week of April! The one way out of this frustration is to make sure to call the office and verify the appointment before going in. The office staff is professional and friendly and phone messages are returned quickly. rn"