Woman walking in her neighborhood
Woman walking in her neighborhood

Access to Care

It's never too early to focus on weight and health. Everyone deserves access to safe and effective medical treatment that can improve health, quality of life, and life span. Understanding how your insurance works and who to contact with coverage questions and concerns is important.

Access to Care

It's never too early to focus on weight and health. Everyone deserves access to safe and effective medical treatment that can improve health, quality of life, and life span. Understanding how your insurance works and who to contact with coverage questions and concerns is important.

Weight and health are important

The growing number of weight-related medical problems means that most health plans, including all policies sold through your state’s health insurance marketplace, must offer free preventive care for obesity.

The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to cover obesity screening and counseling at no cost to you. If your initial screening shows a body mass index (BMI) to be over 30, you may qualify for additional services as well.

Obesity care: Looking to the future

Hear from people living with obesity who are hopeful about improvements in obesity care.

Matthew Salazar: Where I see hope with the discussion around obesity is that someone who’s growing up and has grown up with obesity throughout their life, could walk into a fresh doctor’s office that they’ve never been to before and have a healthy conversation about their obesity.

Donna Kaznel: What makes me hopeful is that I’m beginning to see more and more people accept the idea that obesity is a disease and that there are different treatment options available — and that they’re more willing to seek different options. That makes me hopeful and also hopeful that more people will start to reduce weight bias, and start to accept people and treat people with respect, and respect the fact that they need help with their disease, they don’t need to be ashamed or humiliated.

Jason Krynicki: The hope that I see is that people see us as who we are — we’re human beings, and we’re not just somebody who is quote unquote ‘fat’.

Patty Nece: I see a shift in healthcare providers' thinking about obesity. More and more providers are trying to learn more about obesity as a disease. I also see people living with obesity, like me, raising their voices and challenging the stereotypes about people with overweight or obesity. I’m hopeful that over time, those movements will grow, and that we truly will change how people understand obesity.

Understand your insurance policy

Review the details of your plan and don’t be afraid to ask your employer. If you are denied coverage for obesity care, talk with your health care provider about additional options to obtain coverage. Also, talk to your employer about how you and your health care team can improve coverage for what is needed.

Coverage can vary significantly depending upon where you live. Make sure to read about how your insurance works so that you understand what kind of insurance you have, including your prescription plan.

Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) is also a great resource for more information on navigating insurance policies and access challenges.

Your health care provider can be a resource

Your health care provider and their insurance, billing, and preauthorization departments are great resources for information on access to obesity care. Stay in contact with them and seek their advice because many offices have valuable experience working with employers and insurance companies.

They can also help you understand the coverage you have and advocate for you by writing correspondence you can use when speaking with someone in your HR benefits department and insurance companies. Often, a letter addressed to your HR benefits department from your health care provider describing what your coverage needs are can make a difference.

Help support the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act

There’s a growing movement to get better insurance coverage for weight management and obesity. You can help the cause by learning about and supporting the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA) to provide more funding and better treatment options for health care providers to address obesity, including medical intervention, counseling, and drug treatment.

Learn more about the TROA

Help support the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act

There’s a growing movement to get better insurance coverage for weight management and obesity. You can help the cause by learning about and supporting the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (TROA) to provide more funding and better treatment options for health care providers to address obesity, including medical intervention, counseling, and drug treatment.

Learn more about the TROA

TrueWeight® Report

Get your free, personalized TrueWeight® Report. Answering a few questions about your weight-management history, current lifestyle, and goals is a great way to prepare for a conversation with a health care provider.

Get started

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Get more information

Learn more about obesity care from Truth About Weight®

Get more information

Learn more about obesity care from Truth About Weight®