ÖGK-Huss: support for obesity to change lifestyle more effectively than current drugs

Support people and don’t punish them, legal measures are needed

Vienna (OTS) According to OECD data, the incidence of obesity in Austria, but also in the world, is continuously increasing. Compared to other countries, Austria is 2% above the OECD average for overweight young people. In the scientific discussion it is clear that there are legal measures that counter this trend. Particularly effective are public health measures, such as better food labeling, advertising restrictions for unhealthy foods and pricing policy measures. These preventive measures are effective and support the healthy growth of all young people. In combination with this, overweight or obese people should be supported in making lifestyle changes.

ÖGK Employee President Andreas Huss: “The Austrian health insurance company currently has a great offer for overweight people and supports them with lifestyle changes with multi-professional teams. We want to further expand these offerings across the board. expand our budget for prevention and health promotion from 1.4% of spending to 5%. Because every euro of prevention is tripled “.

In the federal states there are offers and projects that support affected people and their families with multidisciplinary teams for a longer period of time to change their lifestyle and to integrate healthy eating, regular exercise and relaxation into the daily routine. . Support teams for projects such as “easykids” in Salzburg or “Down & Up” in Carinthia are made up of movement experts, occupational therapists, dieticians, psychologists and doctors. Pharmacological treatments are not at the heart of these settings.

Andreas Huss: “If the lifestyle change doesn’t really work and there are urgent medical reasons, the health insurance company will also pay for an operation and post-operative care. There are some medicines on the market that are non-refundable or they were even rejected by the Drug Evaluation Commission, in which the Chamber of Doctors and the Chamber of Pharmacists are also represented. Unfortunately, the slimming pill does not yet exist “.

Again and again there are ideas for taking over overweight people and blaming individuals. Health penalties and finger-raised acting have actually been outdated since the 1990s, but some actors continue to dig into this pointing finger mothballs. This also applies to the new proposal to increase family allowances for families with thin children.

Andreas Huss: “By now all experts should be aware that punishment cannot trigger intrinsic motivation. To counter the spread of obesity, legislative measures on public health and support for lifestyle changes are needed. If we form an obesity alliance for these measures, we can reach and positively motivate many people. ÖGK is a reliable partner. For this, however, all political fields are required. Health in all policies is the answer of the moment, especially when it comes to obesity. Now would be the right time to do it. “

Questions and contacts:

ÖGK employee representative Andreas Huss, MBA
tel. 0664/614 55 34

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