Posts Tagged ‘access to care’

Did Medicaid Expansion Help with Bariatric Surgery?

October 16, 2021 — A decade ago, Medicaid expansion was supposed to be a real winner for better access to care. It was a sweet deal for states adopting it. Yet our polarized politics have meant that even now, after a decade, some states are still dragging their feet. That leaves two million people from 12 states in limbo […]

Higher Mortality for Men After Bariatric Surgery?

October 5, 2021 — Bariatric surgery is a relatively safe surgical procedure. Overall, people with obesity who undergo bariatric surgery tend to live longer than those who don’t. Nonetheless, just as with any surgery, complications can occur. Recent data from the MBSAQIP database document a 30-day mortality rate between one and two deaths per thousand patients. New data, presented […]

Bariatric Surgery in Children as Well as Teens

September 29, 2021 — As severe obesity has grown to take a toll on a growing number of children and teens, clinical care is evolving. In 2019, the American Academy of Pediatrics said it plainly. Youth with severe obesity need better access to bariatric surgery. The authors of that position statement conceded that most of the young patients for […]

Barriers to Overcoming Obesity: Lack of Coverage

September 28, 2021 — Ample medical evidence supports the fact that obesity is a complex, chronic, relapsing disease. Yet somehow it remains a subject of hot debates in the medical community, not to mention society at large. When it comes to treating obesity with medication, numerous insurers rely on the opinions of committees to determine which medications to cover. […]

When Health Systems Delay Obesity Care

September 7, 2021 — Care delayed is care denied. The truth of this is obvious in emergency medicine. In the case of a stroke or a traumatic injury, unnecessary delays in care lead to immediate harm. But with a chronic, progressive disease, the harm can be more subtle. Add in systemic bias and delayed care can become quite a […]

Making the Lived Experience of Obesity Invisible

August 18, 2021 — The lived experience of obesity has many dimensions, but one of the most troubling is being invisible. Melanie Bahlke, a remarkable patient advocate from Frankfurt, Germany,  explains it beautifully: “I am used to being talked about more than having people talk to me. For everyone I am something different and I am rarely what I […]

Public Policy Based on Anger and Fear

August 8, 2021 — Anger is circulating freely these days. It’s nothing new. But harnessing anger and its close cousin – fear – is a skill social media algorithms seem to have mastered. Thus, politicians see an opportunity and anger grows. Punitive public policy scores points with constituents stoked by anger and fear. It seldom solves problems, though. In […]

What Does It Mean to Be Dead Last in Healthcare?

August 6, 2021 — It is a jarring headline. U.S. health systems cost the most and perform the worst in comparison to ten other wealthy countries. In fact, the comparison is not even close. So what does it mean to be dead last in healthcare? Norway, the Netherlands, and Australia have the top performing health systems. The list also […]

Promoting Disparities in Health and Obesity Policies

July 25, 2021 — Healthcare and policies on obesity serve people with wealth and privilege. The disparities are great in the U.S. But they exist everywhere. Just look at childhood obesity in the U.K. Consider the ten percent of children with the most social and economic deprivation. They have three times higher rates of obesity compared to the ten […]

Dependence, Independence, and Offering Care

July 4, 2021 — This is a day for Americans to celebrate independence. Though the holiday marks independence from a colonial power, Americans invest a lot in a broader concept of independence. Dependence on others for many things – including care for health – is essential for strong communities, and yet Americans celebrate a spirit of independence. It wasn’t […]