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Our Purpose

Obesity is not a lifestyle problem or a failure of willpower. It is a chronic disease as serious and potentially deadly as diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers.

Yet, people with obesity are treated differently than those with any other disease. Many are fat-shamed and discriminated against for having obesity, and very few receive a formal diagnosis or counseling from their physicians. As a result, as many as 96 percent of Americans with obesity do not obtain quality care at a time when new therapies have been shown to achieve clinically significant weight loss.

Addressing this situation requires “breaking glass” to destigmatize obesity, end weight bias within the healthcare system, and confront the inequities in obesity care among older adults and communities of color. In effect, systems change will only happen when people with obesity think differently about themselves and their disease and have the knowledge, skills and confidence to view themselves as equal partners with their health providers in decisions about their care.

This is the purpose of an Obesity Bill of Rights for adult Americans. Based on the recognition that obesity is a treatable disease and that everyone with obesity deserves the same level of attention and care as those with other chronic conditions, a bill of rights for people with obesity can affect change by achieving three important goals:

Building people’s confidence that they will receive quality obesity care by assuring fair and responsive diagnosis and treatment and effective mechanisms to address patient concerns.

Enhancing strong and trusting relationships between people with obesity and their healthcare providers.

Affirming the role of people with obesity in making decisions about their care and safeguarding their own health.

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About NCL

National Consumers League
1701 K Street, NW, Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20006

T: (202) 835-3323