Official wants Medicare to cover obesity medicines

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Former U.S. Health and Human Services
Secretary Tommy Thompson is urging Congress to pass year-old legislation
requiring Medicare to cover obesity medicines for seniors.
The
ex-Wisconsin governor was in Lansing Wednesday drawing attention to the
obesity problem. Thompson says fitness and diet are important, but some
overweight people also need medications because of genetics and
metabolism.
He says if Medicare covers obesity treatments, long-term costs associated with chronic diseases will
drop.
Eighteen
percent of Michigan’s population was obese in 1995. The rate reached 32
percent by 2010, and officials are warning half of the state’s
residents could be obese by 2030.
Michigan Department of Community
Health Director James Haveman says Michigan is the "10th-fattest state"
and urges residents to lose 10 percent of their weight.