Obesity and Health Care Policy
When one is obese, his/her body mass index (BMI) is 30 and above. Obesity is caused by various factors among them family history as well as lifestyle. There has been rise in cases of obesity worldwide and this has been attributes to change in the way of life. Obesity is most common in developed nations compared to developing nations. This is mainly because of the differences in diet as well as way of life (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). On the other hand, the rich in the developing countries are more likely to developed obesity due to change in lifestyle. The main cause of obesity is consumption of processed food which excludes fiber. Recent data from Centre for disease control in U.S, about 73.7% of population over 20 years are either obese or overweight (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). By 2008, about 300 million people in U.S were ether obese or overweight. In terms of percentage, 5.7% were extreme obese, 33.8 percent were obese while 34.2 percent were overweight. Recent data from Scotland indicate that child obesity is on rise.
Compared to other nations in U.K, Scotland is leading in obesity and overweight among teenager and young children. In U.K, there is growing hope of coming up with the solution to obesity crisis as political process has been put in place (Harvard School of Public Health, 2012). The data also reveals that 22% men and 26% women in Scotland are overweight and obese. The same data stipulates that by 2003, 23%women and 22% men had obesity. This trend is expected to be on rise to reach 28% of women and 33% men. There is also a sharp rise in childhood obesity. By 2010, over one million children were living with obesity in Scotland. Management of obesity is expensive. According to internal medicine archives report of 2010, U.S uses over $147 billion to manage weight related illnesses (Forbes, 2012). Over the last few decades, obesity has been on rise and this trend is bound to continue if appropriate measures are not put in place.
Most Americans (over 75%) are already aware that obesity is a major problem according to recent survey by public policy institute in California. The cost of management of obesity has also risen. Research by Public Health Research Group show that, from 1995, to 2000, Americans used more than $260 on subsidies in Agriculture and $262 billion dollars on apple subsidies, this has helped in management of obesity. Currently, a large number of American people are aware that obesity is a severe problem (Reinberg, 2009). Those who server forms it are also aware of this. The cost of management of this vice is also in their mind. The disease condition is as a result of failure in U.S ealth –care. Compared to other nations, U.S devotes extra cash per capita as well as a percentage of income. The U.S health indicator rate is bottommost as compared to that of other developed nations. There is need for obesity to be recognized as social cancer.
Just like tobacco which causes cancer on physical body, obesity on the other hand results into social illness as one’s esteem is reduced. A proper way of management of obesity is on diet. There is need to reduce the amount of meal taken per day. There should be restriction in the consumption of high fat diet. The individual should instead increase consumption of fiber rich diet (Jaslow, 2012). This diet has the ability to bind any excess fat thus reduction in storage of such fat. Fat provide 9kcal of energy, more than double that of carbohydrates. Physical exercise has been proved to be an important ingredient in obesity management as well as prevention. This activity helps in metabolism of excessive body fat thus reducing storage. Physical exercises such as running and taking a walk also play an important role on management and prevention of the same.
Law for reforms on Health care is essential in ensuring that obesity crisis is contained. Among the preventive care process blue prints should include screening at hospital and community level for the condition. This should be applied throughout the year. Among other services to be included include nutrition counseling as well as other counseling tips such as on physical exercises as well as screening tests (Jaslow, 2012). Nutrition counseling is critical at hospital setting as far as prevention and management of obesity is concerned. There is need to increase the number of nutritionists in hospital setting, failure to which there is likelihood of rise in obesity cases in the future. Through counseling, patients are provided which information on how they can manage the disease at home. Among the information provided include the type of diet they should consume at home. Through counseling, individuals who are not sick are also provided with firsthand information on how they can prevent themselves from becoming obese.
Community based programs should be put in place to facilitate fight against obesity. Members of public should be engaged in discussions aimed at coming up with solution to obesity problem. Owing to the low self-esteem among some people who have obesity, there is need for population to be advised against disclamation members who are obese. Low self-esteem is associated with deterioration of obesity (Jaslow, 2012). Today, health care systems are faced with the challenge of rising cases of obesity and overweight. In develloping countries, this problem is more prominent because of lack of adequate resources as well as medical staffs.
Management of obesity requires teamwork and members of this team include nurses, doctors, nutritionists, government officials as well as public health officers. Lack of this has undermined the fight against the vice. Other stakeholders include task forces, community planning teams, coalitions, as well as collaborative teams. This will ensure community plans to change behavior succeed. In developing countries, the role of nutritionist is in some cases not recognized. This has led to increase in obesity incidence. Change of diet has played a great role in development of obesity. The Process that is community based ensures that there is efficiency in prevention.
This approach entails managing as well as coordination of coalitions, community planning teams as well as task forces. Such plans have been developed elsewhere for example Texas. The planning process is composed of five steps which are nutrition assessment, building the capacity of community members, planning and implementation, and finally evaluation with reflection for lasting solution as well as cultural competence. Community key stakeholders should be included in planning for preventive efforts. There is need for comprehensive coordination of services both at national and community level. Community mobilization is also critical to prevention of obesity. This is more so importance in educating community members on change in diet. Interventions should be driven by data in addition to evidence.
There are several methods that can be used to evaluate policy change. Among them include questionnaire. Through it, one is able to explore the knowledge, attitudes, beliefs as well as behavior of health care providers. Both paperwork as well as electronic formats can be utilized to inspire responses. Questionnaire is useful especially when data from large population is desired. Use of brainstorming is also useful in evaluating policy change. Braining storming is a process of coming up with results to problems. This is done by a small group which is part of focus group. Focus group is also a way of evaluating policy change. The facilitators pose questions which are then discussed by group members.
Advanced practice nurses are critical in prevention as well as management of obesity. They are involved in intensive counseling and screening for obesity. The nurses are involved in assessment for the disease. They are also involved in offering diagnostic as well as clinical skills. Directing care as well as management of health needs is also the role of nurses.
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