Bariatric Times

APR 2017

A peer-reviewed, evidence-based journal that promotes clinical development and metabolic insights in total bariatric patient care for the healthcare professional

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24 News and Trends Bariatric Times • April 2017 AN UPDATE ON THE TREAT AND REDUCE OBESITY ACT OF 2017 The Obesity Society Optimistic of the Passage of the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act of 2017 WASHINGTON, D.C.–The Treat a nd Reduce Obesity Act of 2017 was introduced this month in both the Senate and House with bi-partisan support. The Obesity Society acknowledges the support and perseverance of Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Tom Carper (D- DE) and Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Ron Kind (D- WI) in their ongoing efforts to ensure passage of this important piece of legislation. The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act is a critical step in addressing the obesity epidemic in the United States by providing more funding and better treatment options for healthcare professionals including intervention, counseling, and drug treatment. This Act will also provide valuable assistance for seniors battling obesity by covering medications through Medicare part D designed for weight loss management. "This commonsense fix to Medicare Part D is an important step in helping seniors treat and reduce obesity as well as the chronic conditions caused as a result of this disease," said Congressman Paulsen. "Access to these drugs will reduce health care costs across the board, improve seniors' quality of life, and help curb the obesity crisis." In the United States, over 90 million individuals—35% of adults and 17% of children—have obesity. Obesity in America has steadily risen since 1960 and is one of the greatest public health challenges of our time. As a leading cause of U.S. mortality, morbidity, disability, healthcare utilization and healthcare costs— reaching $200 billion per year— obesity is a pervasive, chronic disease in need of new strategies for medical treatment and prevention. "Obesity accounts for nearly 10 percent of all annual medical spending in the United States. Unless we do something to address the obesity epidemic, the costs and harm to public health will only c ontinue to rise," said Representative Kind. "The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act of 2017 is a critical step to improving health outcomes for our aging population, a s well as reining in out-of-control health care spending." As obesity continues to rise, ranking among major global health problems, it's urgent that the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act be enacted. Obesity needs to be approached as a disease with comprehensive, multi- pronged treatment. "As a doctor, I've seen obesity's effect on a person's physical and mental wellness," said Dr. Cassidy. "We must work together to make effective treatment of obesity a priority. This bipartisan legislation will lower health costs and give patients access to proper tools for better health." "Passing this Act sends a powerful message to the America public that Washington understands what's at stake and is willing to invest in our health." - The Obesity Society President Dr. Allen S. Levine About The Obesity Society. The Obesity Society (TOS) is the leading professional society dedicated to better understanding, preventing and treating obesity. Through research, education and advocacy, TOS is committed to improving the lives of those affected by the disease. For more information visit: www.Obesity.org. Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) Applauds U.S. Lawmakers for Introducing the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act of 2017 TAMPA, Florida—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: T his legislation would provide CMS with the authority to expand the Medicare benefit for intensive behavioral counseling by allowing additional types of healthcare p roviders 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 to 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 six 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. To learn more about the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act of 2017, please visit www.obesityaction.org/advocacy/legi slative-action-center. About the Obesity Action Coalition. The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), a more than 56,000 member-strong National non-profit organization, is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals affected by the disease of obesity through education, advocacy and support. BODY WEIGHT FLUCTUATIONS LINKED TO MORE DEATHS IN PEOPLE WITH CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE NEW YORK, New York—Repeated cycles of weight loss and gain may be linked to higher risk for stroke, h eart attack, and death in people with pre-existing coronary artery disease, according to a study published online this month in the New England Journal of Medicine. Led by researchers at NYU Langone Medical Center, the study was the first to measure the effect of "weight cycling" on health outcomes in people with pre-existing heart disease. People with the largest weight changes were found to experience 136 percent more strokes, 117 percent more heart attacks, and 124 percent more deaths than those with the smallest shifts in weight. Those in the high-fluctuation group had weight changes as large as 3.9 kilograms (or roughly 8.6 pounds), while weight varied by around 0.9 kilograms (just under 2 pounds) in the group with the smallest shifts in weight. "Our findings suggest that we need to be concerned about weight fluctuation in this group that is already at high risk due to coronary disease," says lead study author Sripal Bangalore, MD, director of the cardiovascular outcomes group in the Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center at NYU Langone. "Even though this analysis was not designed to find out the causes of increased risk with body weight fluctuations, we need to examine how we can help Americans keep weight off, rather than having it go up and down," says Bangalore, an associate professor of medicine in the Leon H. Charney Division of Cardiology. The research team reviewed data on 9,509 men and women with coronary artery disease (CAD) who participated in the Treating to New Targets trial, which originally concluded in 2005. Study participants were between the ages of 35 and 75. All had coronary artery disease, high cholesterol levels, and News and Trends APRIL 2017

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