Access & Policy Issues
Our community is made up of individuals that believe no matter your weight, size, or economic status, you should have access to science-based treatment and comprehensive care for obesity. The OAC works to help influence government policies, that range from approving treatment options, to improving funding for research. Government policies have such an immense effect on the society we live in. Take action to improve access to care and influence decision makers and the policies they enact!
Urge the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services to Support the World Obesity Day 2020 Declaration!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: In recognition of World Obesity Day (March 4) taking place during Obesity Care Week, obesity-focused organizations across the world have sent a joint declaration to the World Health Organization (W.H.O.) that calls for a global response to obesity. Among other key issues, the declaration addresses the need for more research, comprehensive treatment and the recognition of obesity as a chronic disease.
YOUR ASK: Urge the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services to lead the United States in supporting the World Obesity Day 2020 Declaration and be a force for change!
Sign Obesity Care Week’s Childhood Obesity Petition if You Believe Children with Obesity Deserve the Same Access to Healthcare as Adults
HERE’S THE ISSUE: Obesity Care Week is raising awareness about childhood obesity and the need for families to have valuable resources to address this issue with their children and provide the necessary care. The OAC supports Obesity Care Week in believing that children with obesity deserve the same access to healthcare as adults.
YOUR ASK: Do you agree that children with obesity deserve the same access to healthcare as adults? If yes, help us raise awareness about this issue and sign-on to Obesity Care Week’s childhood obesity petition!
Share Your Access to Care Stories to Help Humanize Obesity for U.S. Legislators during World Obesity Day, March 4th!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: World Obesity Day will take place March 4th, during Obesity Care Week 2020. On this day, the OAC will be on Capitol Hill to urge U.S. legislators to co-sponsor and support the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA). While meeting with legislators about an important bill like TROA is exciting, the best way to get our message across is to share real stories from people impacted by the issue.
YOUR ASK: Make a short video sharing your access to care stories for U.S. legislators during World Obesity Day, March 4th.
Take an Active Step in Your Healthcare by Reviewing Your Health Insurance Plan!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: The OAC believes ALL insurance plans should cover obesity care and treatment. Obesity is a complex and chronic disease the people should not have to manage alone.
YOUR ASK: Review your insurance to see if it includes obesity care and treatment coverage.
Urge Pennsylvania State Legislators to Support House Bill 410 Improving Access to Obesity Treatment Medications!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: House Bill 410 (HB 410) would allow FDA-approved medications that treat obesity to be covered under the state’s Medicaid program, if managed care organizations decide coverage for these drugs is medically necessary.
YOUR ASK: Send an email or tweet to your Pennsylvania State Legislator asking them to support HB 410.
Urge Congress to support the passage of the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act.
HERE’S THE ISSUE: The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA) will provide Medicare beneficiaries and their healthcare providers with meaningful tools to reduce obesity by improving access to weight-loss counseling and new prescription medications for chronic weight management. While the legislation is focused on improving access to obesity treatments for Medicare beneficiaries, it is important to remember that often times private and employer based insurance plans base their coverage on matching Medicare coverage. Therefore, this legislation is important to all Americans.
YOUR ASK: Send an email or tweet to your Senator and Representatives asking them to support TROA.
Take Action to Support Access to Care during National Obesity Care Week!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: Everyone should have access to healthcare. Access should not be limited by a person’s size, weight or economic status. Access to care is not a complicated idea. It can mean different things for different people, but in the end, it is about people getting the help they need to treat obesity.
YOUR ASK: Improve access to care by taking action during National Obesity Care Week.
Urge Your State Officials to Take Action and Increase Access to Obesity Services in Your State Today!
HERE’S THE ISSUE: Obesity currently impacts more than two-thirds of Americans nationwide. While this is a significant part of the population, many individuals still find themselves severely limited when trying to access evidence-based obesity care options, such as obesity medications, bariatric surgery, behavioral therapy and more.
YOUR ASK: Sign our petition asking for fair coverage of obesity treatment services.
Urge Your Governor to Make Obesity Care an Essential Benefit in Your State
HERE’S THE ISSUE: 27 States do not cover bariatric surgery under the state’s essential health benefit (EHB) benchmark plan. EHB plans are the standard plans sold under the Affordable Care Act (ACA often called “Obamacare”) in healthcare exchanges and on both the individual and small business market. This, in effect, means that most individuals and small businesses can’t buy coverage for bariatric surgery.
WHO: Residents of Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.
YOUR ASK: Send an email to your Governor asking them to support essential benefit coverage of bariatric surgery before December 31, 2019.
Urge Your Governor to Provide Comprehensive Obesity Care for State Employees
HERE’S THE ISSUE: 6 States do not cover comprehensive obesity care including the recommended counseling visits, medications and bariatric surgery.
WHO: Residents of Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Montana, South Carolina and Wisconsin.
YOUR ASK: Send your Governor an email asking them to support obesity care coverage before December 31, 2019.
Urge Your Governor to Provide Comprehensive Obesity Care for State Employees
HERE’S THE ISSUE: 19 States do not cover comprehensive obesity care including the recommended counseling visits and medications. These states cover bariatric surgery, but not comprehensive care.
WHO: Residents of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington or West Virginia.
YOUR ASK: Send an email to your Governor asking them to support comprehensive obesity care coverage before December 31, 2019.
Urge Your Governor to Make Obesity Care Available under Medicaid
HERE’S THE ISSUE: Only 2 states do not cover bariatric surgery as well as the recommended number of counseling visits and medications for obesity under Medicaid.
WHO: Residents of Mississippi and Montana.
YOUR ASK: Send an email to your Governor asking for support of comprehensive obesity care including bariatric surgery under Medicaid before December 31, 2019.
Urge your Governor to Make Comprehensive Obesity Care Available under Medicaid
HERE’S THE ISSUE: 30 states do not cover the recommended number of counseling visits and medications for obesity under their Medicaid programs.
WHO: Residents of Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia or Wyoming.
YOUR ASK: Send your Governor an email asking them to support comprehensive obesity care under Medicaid before December 31, 2019.
Looking for tools to help you with taking action on Access to Care? Click here for helpful resources