Tampa, Fla. – The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) applauded Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Tom Carper (D-DE) and Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Ron Kind (D-WI) for introducing the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA) of 2017 (S830) (HR1953). This critical legislation will provide Medicare beneficiaries with additional treatment tools to help seniors address their overweight and obesity.

Specifically, the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act will:

This legislation would provide CMS with the authority to expand the Medicare benefit for intensive behavioral counseling by allowing additional types of healthcare providers to offer these services.

It also allows the agency to expand Medicare Part D to provide coverage of FDA-approved prescription drugs for chronic weight management.

“The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act of 2017 will provide Medicare recipients and their healthcare providers with meaningful tools to treat and reduce obesity by improving access to obesity screening and counseling services, and new prescription drugs for chronic weight management. Studies suggest that even a 5-10 percent weight-loss produces clinically significant reductions in risk factors for chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and others,” said Joe Nadglowski, OAC President and CEO.

The TROA was first introduced in 2013 during the 113th Congress and reintroduced in 2015 during the 114th and received strong bipartisan support in both the House and Senate, with more than 175 co-sponsors. The 2017 version has already secured 22 co-sponsors in the House of Representatives and 6 in the Senate. The OAC strongly hopes to see passage of the TROA this year, as it will help millions of individuals impacted by the disease of obesity.

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), a more than 56,000 member-strong National nonprofit organization, is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by the disease of obesity through education, advocacy and support.