Past Access & Policy Issues

On #GivingTuesdayNow, Give Your Time by Supporting the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act to Help with COVID-19

HERE’S THE ISSUE: #GivingTuesdayNow is May 5, 2020 – a global day of generosity and unity for giving back in response to the need caused by COVID-19. This relates to obesity because obesity is a risk factor for COVID-19 severity and complications. Access to obesity care is invaluable for fighting the virus.

YOUR ASK: Contact your elected officials to support the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act and include its policy provisions in the next COVID-19 relief package.

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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