What Obesity Policies Do We Need?Thursday, September 22, 2022
Earlier this week, I presented at a high-level UK Health Policy Workshop on how I would shape policies to deal with the obesity issue.
My suggestions can essentially be summarised as follows:
- All relevant policies need to acknowledge that obesity management requires the same approach as any other chronic disease.
- The biological nature of the body’s defense against weight loss dictates the need for treatments that address the biology and don’t just rely on education, motivation, and willpower.
- Managing obesity needs to become first-line treatment for all patients presenting with any obesity related comorbidity.
- Obesity management can be funded by progressively diverting funds from treating obesity complication and comorbidities to treating obesity itself.
- Basic competencies in obesity management need to be a mandatory requirement in all medical licensing exams.
Whether or not these suggestions find their way into health policies in the UK or elsewehere remains to be seen, but I certainly see no alternative to implementing such policies if we are ever to make a dent in the obesity crisis that is clearly affecting every health care system around the world.