Obesity Week Forum: Employee Wellness or Hellness?

Mark your calendar. On Tuesday during Obesity Week, the Obesity Society Advocacy Committee will sponsor a forum, “Weight Bias, Employment, and Wellness Programs.” Expect a lively discussion because employee wellness programs have generated considerable controversy over the last year. Twice as many employers are expected to start imposing employee wellness penalties next year, so the controversy is likely to grow.

Sound wellness programs based on a corporate culture of health can do a lot of good. But they can easily become an excuse for cost shifting to people with chronic diseases and a subterfuge for discrimination.

Here are the details.

Tuesday, Nov 12, 1:30pm
Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Room A411

Title: Weight Bias, Employment, and Wellness Programs
Research documenting significant economic and career penalties for people with obesity continues to emerge. With the implementation of Obamacare, more and more employers are creating financial incentives tied to health outcomes, including BMI. Join us for a lively presentation of recent evidence, trends, and policy implications.

1:30 Introduction
        Ted Kyle, TOS Advocacy Chair

1:40 Fairness in Wellness – Implications of Weight Bias and Access to Care
        Joe Nadglowski
        CEO, Obesity Action Coalition

2:00 Evidence for Sound Workplace Weight Loss Programs
        Jennifer Lovejoy
        Senior Vice President, Clinical Development & Support, Alere Wellbeing

2:20 Employee Wellness Practices and Impact of the ACA
        Mark G. Wilson
        Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
        College of Public Health, University of Georgia, Athens

2:40 Discussion
        Moderated by Deborah Bade Horn
        Vice President, American Society of Bariatric Physicians

3:00 Adjourn

Click here to read more about sound employee wellness programs.

Escalator to Hell or Stairway from Heaven, photograph © Sven Seiler / flickr

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