AMA: Obesity An Illness - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

AMA: Obesity An Illness

Posted: Updated:
BILLINGS -

A decision by the American Medical Association could change the way we look at a major health issue.

In a report by the AMA's Council on Science and Public Health, obesity, defined by the organization as having a body mass index of 30 or above, is considered to be a disease.

According to reports, two out of every three Americans are either obese or overweight, and the AMA is now saying that people who are obese require medical treatment and prevention.

Some say the decision could have an impact on medical treatment in the future.

"I was so excited that they finally classified it as a disease, because that means that maybe insurance will start covering things more readily for those out there who can't afford to have the surgery done, or the other intervention done," said Kristen Diede.

"The trouble is, there's always been that social perception that 'well, it's just a willpower issue'. That if people just did the right behaviors. Well, you can say the same thing about high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, but we still consider those as disease," said Dr. Christopher Sorli with Billings Clinic.

The AMA is recommending insurance providers get appropriate financial support and payment from third-party payers, to ensure there is an incentive to manage obesity, and the category of complex diseases associated with it.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Super Volcano is Bigger

    Super Volcano is Bigger

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 9:27 AM EDT2014-07-23 13:27:04 GMT
    The world’s authority on Yellowstone’s Super Volcano says it’s more than twice as big as scientists once thought. Does that mean it’s more likely to blow up soon? Penny Preston found Dr. Robert Smith at his home near Grand Teton, and found the answer.
    The world’s authority on Yellowstone’s Super Volcano says it’s more than twice as big as scientists once thought. Does that mean it’s more likely to blow up soon? Penny Preston found Dr. Robert Smith at his home near Grand Teton, and found the answer.
  • Lightning Strikes a Tree

    Lightning Strikes a Tree

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 9:15 AM EDT2014-07-23 13:15:35 GMT
    A husband and wife in Lockwood had quite a scare, when their 100-year-old tree was struck by lightning.
    A husband and wife in Lockwood had quite a scare, when their 100-year-old tree was struck by lightning.
  • Bernie's Diner Believes Tasting is Believing

    Bernie's Diner Believes Tasting is Believing

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 8:19 PM EDT2014-07-23 00:19:05 GMT

    Employees from Bernie's Diner hit the streets of downtown Billings in full force today.

    Employees from Bernie's Diner hit the streets of downtown Billings in full force today.