Our Staff

Helene Buchin

Administrative Manager

Helene has over 13 years of experience as a healthcare administrator. She has worked as a medical consultant, establishing and operating physician practices as well as developing budgets, and formulating and implementing policies, objectives, and procedures for various departments. As the Administrative Manager for the Bariatric department, Helene manages the daily operations of Dr. Buchin’s practice, ensuring proper functioning of procedures. Her combined understanding of clinical issues with business management allows her to constantly improve services, ensuring the proper care of patients.

Karla Horrmann

Bariatric Administrative Assistant

Karla has over 11 years of customer service experience in addition to her expertise as a medical administrative assistant. As the medical secretary for Bariatric Surgery, she is responsible for appointments, scheduling cases and obtaining insurance approvals. Her specialized knowledge of medical terminology and insurance procedures ensures proper care of all patients. Karla is a caring and compassionate person who responds to all of our patients needs.

Erin Nastro MS PA-C, MS OTR/L

Physician Assistant and Bariatric Coordinator

Erin Nastro MS PA-C, MS OTR/L is the bariatric coordinator and physician assistant at LIObesity Surgery, Huntington Hospital. A native to the town of Huntington, she received her first Master of science degree from NYU in Occupational Therapy. She worked on an inpatient acute rehabilitation floor for three years specializing in stroke and traumatic brain injury. Focus was on resuming activities of daily living post blunt or acquired trauma. After recognizing her passion for studying medicine she graduated from Hofstra University with her second Master degree in science and Physician Assistant studies. Her focus was then on the opposite of the spectrum in medicine; prevention. Her first job was with a private bariatric/general surgery practice that spanned eastern long island. In 2014 she signed on with LIObesity surgery as the bariatric coordinator and first assist to Dr. David Buchin. Here the focus is on promoting healthy living while educating on surgical and conservative means for long term weight loss.

Patricia Balducci-Espiritu RD CDE CDN

Registered Dietician

Patricia (Patti) Balducci-Espiritu RD CDE CDN is the registered dietitian at LI Obesity Surgery. Patti has 20 years of experience in the field of nutrition. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition from L.I.U-C.W. Post College and completed her Dietetic Internship at New York -Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, with emphasis on Nutrition Therapy. Patti's experience has been working as a long-term care/rehabilitation dietitian as well as an inpatient clinical dietitian in the hospital setting. Patti most recently was responsible for assessing and educating inpatient Bariatric patients at Huntington Hospital. At LI Obesity Surgery, Patti works with patients’ pre and post-operatively to educate and counsel them on the various stages of the Bariatric diet as well as suggesting behavioral changes for long term weight loss success. Patti also co-leads twice monthly support groups and pre-operative classes for the bariatric patients.

Lacey Crawford

Practice Medical Assistant

Lacey has over 5 years of experience as a Practice Medical Assistant. As our multi-skilled Medical Assistant she assists Dr. Buchin and the Physician Assistant in caring for our patients. Lacey is responsible for preparing the patients for examination, interviewing the patients to obtain medical history information and obtaining vital signs. In addition to her various clinical duties she is responsible for appointment scheduling and maintaining an efficient flow of the schedule.