Curbing Obesity Epidemic Key to Health Care Reform: Experts

  • Coordinate research efforts to improve the quality of care, show which interventions work in various settings and translate science into practice.
  • Morgan Downey, the alliance's policy adviser, noted one positive aspect of health reform proposals from the House of Representatives and Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee: They eliminate the worry that overweight Americans might not be able to obtain health insurance coverage because of preexisting health conditions.

    "Just the removal of that language really frees up individuals who are overweight or obese to have access to health insurance," he said.

    More information

    The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on overweight and obesity in the United States.

    SOURCES: Sept. 9, 2009, teleconference with Richard Carmona, M.D., former surgeon general and health and wellness chairperson, Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance; Christine C. Ferguson, J.D., director, STOP, and research professor, George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, Washington, D.C.; David Satcher, M.D., Ph.D., former surgeon general, director, The Satcher Health Leadership Institute and Center of Excellence on Health Disparities, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga.; Morgan Downey, J.D., policy adviser, STOP

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