When it comes to the field of obesity medicine, not many people know that there are healthcare providers out there who are specially trained in the treatment of obesity. But that fact is destined to change as more physicians are showing an interest in helping patients with obesity beyond the typical advice to “eat less and exercise more.”
On April 9th, 2021, the American Board of Obesity Medicine (ABOM) announced that more than 1,100 physicians passed its board certification test that was administered in February/March 2021. With this new influx, the number of physicians in the U.S. and Canada who are board-certified in obesity medicine now exceeds 5,200.
“A record 1,140 examinees passed the ABOM exam, establishing obesity medicine as one of the fastest-growing fields in medicine. This represents a 27 percent increase in the total number of ABOM diplomates compared to the previous year. Since 2017, the number of obesity medicine physicians has more than doubled,” said ABOM in its April 9th announcement.
The 1,140 physicians who passed the most recent ABOM certification exam include internists (446), family physicians (313), endocrinologists (66), pediatricians (61), surgeons (54), gastroenterologists (35), and obstetricians/gynecologists (28), along with numerous other specialists.
The Future is Bright for Obesity Care
“Even with all of the challenges facing physicians over the last year, it is heartening to see that so many continued to place a priority on getting the education and training needed to treat their patients with obesity,” said ABOM Board Chairman John Cleek, MD. “With ABOM’s growing numbers, we are getting closer to our goal of ensuring people in every community have access to care from a physician who has the skills and knowledge to combat this disease.”
These numbers tell us that more physicians are recognizing that obesity medicine is a field in its own right. As we know, treating obesity isn’t always as simple as diet and exercise. That’s why there is value in learning the science behind obesity and knowing the different types of evidence-based treatment options that are out there for those who want/need them.
To read the full announcement from ABOM, click here.
To locate a healthcare provider near you who is ABOM-certified, click here to visit the Obesity Action Coalition’s Obesity Care Provider Locator.