Should obese people pay more for healthcare?
What is obesity?
Obesity is the presence of excessively high amounts of body fat in relation to lean body mass
BMI = ≥ 30
Poor diet and inactivity
Risk factor for a range of diseases:
Cardiovascular diseases: e.g. Coronary heart disease .
Cancer including; breast, prostate, colon, uterine.
High blood pressure + related complications.
Metabolic syndrome; diabetes mellitus.
○ Poor Body Image,
○ Low Self-Esteem.
The cost of obesity plus overweight is estimated at between £6.6 billion and £7.4billion per year.
£49 million for treating obesity,
£1.1 billion for treating the consequences.
Indirect costs of £1.1 billion for premature deaths
£1.45 billion for sickness absence.
30,000 deaths a year in England due to obesity.
Increased burden on medical budget.
Middle-aged complications now appearing in children e.g. Diabetes.
If the percentage of obese children continues to rise at a rapid rate, the next generation will have a shorter life expectancy.
Obese people should pay more
They receive more treatment.
Lead high risk lifestyle.
Personal choice thus should take responsibility.
Bad drivers have to pay more for car insurance due to higher risk for accidents.
Smokers have to pay increasingly taxes for their unhealthy habit.
Obese People shouldn't have to pay more
Tax people prone to illnesses too;
Provide free healthcare for only healthy people
what about people who lead high risk lifestyles? Skydivers, rock climbers e.t.c.
Childhood obesity, who pays?
pre-existing condition or hereditary.
Increasing taxes does not always deter people from consuming a product;
smokers and drinkers
Don't have to be obese to be unhealthy.
My opinion Societies fault?
Caused by behavioural and environmental changes in our society.
High fat- energy dense foods easily accessible.
Introduction of machines
Society should take initiative:
Increased charge for people of a certain weight who don't make and effort.
○ how fat would you have to be to qualify to be pay more?
Introduce continuous interventions to promote development of life-long healthy habits.
○ Increased taxes on junk food,
○ Decrease fat, sugar, salt content in processed foods,
○ Encourage exercise and dieting.
Clinical guidelines on the identification, evaluation, and treatment of overweight and obesity in adults
2 Zaninotto P Lifestyle Statistics; February 2009 Statistics on obesity, physical activity and diet: England, version 1
et al (2006) Forecasting obesity to 2010. London: Joint Health Surveys Unit.
Department of Health (2004) Choosing health: Making healthy choices easier. London: Department of Health
http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/index.html Fact sheet N°311September 2006