‘A very important milestone has been reached for obesity sufferers: the recognition of their disease’

This recognition has come with a new comprehensive German National Diabetes Strategy.

On 3rd July 2020, Member of Parliament Alexander Krauß presented on the National Diabetes Strategy to the German Bundestag, with a focus on Obesity.

Mr Krauß was able to announce, ‘Today a very important milestone has been reached for obesity sufferers: the recognition of their disease by the German Bundestag.’

He went on to say, ‘It is not enough for a patient to go to the doctor and have him or her simply tell them to eat a little less and exercise a little more. That is not sufficient therapy.’

The experiences of people living with obesity were rightly foregrounded by Mr Krauß as this landmark was reached.

‘Unfortunately, the only thing that the affected people experience in abundance is mockery and ridicule. We will not resign ourselves to this, and we will now also work to ensure that something changes in this country.

What do we need? We finally need care for people with obesity by family doctors and specialists that is worthy of its name, first and foremost decent outpatient treatment.’

This is a milestone for people living with obesity in Germany, and across Europe, and a significant achievement for the German Obesity Alliance.

The recognition is a watershed in shifting the dialogue surrounding the condition and improving the prevention and treatment strategies for obesity within the public health care system in Germany. 

Alexander Krauß made clear that with the recognition of obesity as a chronic disease, inadequate care for those living with the disease is no longer an option in Germany.

Obesity Empowerment Network UK stands with The Royal College of Physicians and Obesity UK in calling for the recognition of obesity as a complex chronic disease and nationwide access to appropriately funded treatment for the disease in the UK.

Sources:

‘German parliament recognises obesity as a disease’, EASO Blog, available at https://easo.org/german-parliament-recognises-obesity-as-a-disease/ .

‘RCP calls for obesity to be recognised as a disease’, RCP Blog, available at https://www.rcplondon.ac.uk/news/rcp-calls-obesity-be-recognised-disease .