Obesity is a Disease: Leading Obesity Groups Agree
Jun 19, 2013 - 3:46:54 PM
(HealthNewsDigest.com) - GAINESVILLE, Fla., June 19, 2013 -- The undersigned groups applaud the American Medical Association's (AMA) House of Delegates (HOD) for adopting policy today to recognize obesity as a disease state with multiple pathophysiological aspects requiring a range of interventions to advance obesity treatment and prevention. "This is clearly a landmark day for the millions of Americans affected by obesity," said Dr. Jeffrey I. Mechanick, President of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), which sponsored the resolution.
"Classifying obesity as a disease will reduce weight bias," said Dr. Ethan Lazarus, AMA HOD Delegate for the American Society of Bariatric Physicians (ASBP), who spoke in favor of the policy during the full HOD meeting earlier today. "It means that medical students and residents will receive training in what obesity is and in the best treatment approaches. It means that the medical community will have incentive to research and develop new and better prevention and treatment strategies. But most importantly, it communicates to individuals affected by obesity that this is a chronic disease, not a problem of personal responsibility," added Lazarus.
"Similar to many other medical conditions, obesity is a complex, multifactorial chronic disease, requiring a multidisciplinary treatment approach. This approach must encompass the best standards of care, both in terms of the treatments chosen, and the care coordination and clinical environment in which they are delivered. Because of the complex nature of obesity and its variety of impacts on both physical and mental health, effective treatment requires the coordinated services of providers from several disciplines and professions (both physician and non-physician) within both of these treatment areas," said AACE President Dr. Mechanick. "Adoption of this policy position by the AMA will help advocates in the obesity community address a number of key hurdles to individuals receiving critical medically necessary obesity treatment services."
"The passage of this new policy reinforces the science behind obesity prevention and treatment," stated Ted Kyle, Chair of The Obesity Society's Advocacy Committee. "Obesity is a complex condition with numerous causes, many of which are largely beyond an individual's control. The disease is a driver of much suffering, ill health and early mortality. People affected are too often subjected to enormous social stigma and discrimination. Recognition of obesity as a disease can help to ensure more resources are dedicated to needed research, prevention and treatment. We hope that it will encourage healthcare professionals to recognize obesity treatment as a needed and respected vocation, and also reduce the stigma and discrimination experienced by the millions affected," added Kyle.
"The AMA joins a number of leading organizations that have previously made this classification, including the National Institutes of Health (1998), the Social Security Administration (1999), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (2004), The Obesity Society (2008) and the American Association for Clinical Endocrinology (2012)," added Dr. Jaime Ponce, President of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.
"We are at a tipping point. The scientific consensus and the mountain of evidence that have been built around the disease of obesity and its treatment cannot be ignored," added John Morton, MD, ASMBS Secretary-Treasurer, Access Chair and Associate Professor of Surgery at Stanford University. "Now patient access to proven treatments needs to improve so scientific consensus is aligned with coverage policy."
"AACE is grateful for the support of so many other members of the House of Medicine who actively spoke out in favor of this policy, including the American Society of Bariatric Physicians, American College of Cardiology, American College of Surgeons, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Society of Reproductive Medicine, American Urological Association, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, The Endocrine Society, American Society of Anesthesiologists, American College of Gastroenterology, Texas Medical Association, Connecticut Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, Society of Thoracic Surgeons and Great Lakes Section Council (comprised of the state medical societies from Ohio, Illinois, New York, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Indiana) and the Western Mountain Delegation (comprised of Medical Societies from Colorado, Nevada and Idaho)," stated Dr. Mechanick with AACE, which sponsored and coordinated support for the resolution during the entire HOD process.
About The Obesity Society (TOS)
TOS is the leading scientific society dedicated to the study of obesity. TOS is committed to encouraging research on the causes, treatment, and prevention of obesity as well as to keeping the scientific community and public informed of new advances in the field. For more information please visit: www.obesity.org.
About the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS)
The ASMBS is the largest organization for bariatric and metabolic surgeons and integrated health professionals in the world. It is a non-profit organization that works to advance the art and science of bariatric surgery and is committed to educating medical professionals and the lay public about bariatric surgery as an option for the treatment of morbid obesity, as well as the associated risks and benefits. It encourages its members to investigate and discover new advances in bariatric surgery, while maintaining a steady exchange of experiences and ideas that may lead to improved surgical outcomes for morbidly obese patients. For more information, visit: www.asmbs.org.
About the American Society of Bariatric Physicians (ASBP)
Founded in 1950, the Society (www.asbp.org) is the oldest medical association dedicated to the treatment of obesity and associated diseases. The Society is a collaborative organization that provides its members practical information and business tools to implement a successful medical bariatric practice.
About the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)
The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) represents more than 6,500 endocrinologists in the United States and abroad. AACE is the largest association of clinical endocrinologists in the world. The majority of AACE members are certified in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism and concentrate on the treatment of patients with endocrine and metabolic disorders including diabetes, thyroid disorders, osteoporosis, growth hormone deficiency, cholesterol disorders, hypertension and obesity. Visit our site atwww.aace.com.
Web Site: http://www.asmbs.org
For advertising and promotion on HealthNewsDigest.com call Mike McCurdy at 877-634-9180 or email@example.com We have over 7,000 journalists as subscribers who have access to our content for their own media.