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Letter from the President: Advocating for Coverage of Obesity Treatments
TOS
Dear Colleagues,

Millions of Americans continue to be denied health insurance coverage for legitimate and proven obesity treatments. Combine that with projections that 1 in 10 Americans will have severe obesity in 2030 and we continue to scratch our heads and ask "why?" And, what can we do as TOS members to make a difference?

The real answers are not as simple as some might argue. The most common argument against access to these treatments is cost. But, as we peel back the onion we find other reasons that are even more complex.
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ASSOCIATION NEWS


Capitol Update: OCC Turns Focus to Better Care, Lower Cost Act
TOS
In early February, leaders from the Obesity Care Continuum (OCC) converged on Washington for the first of planned monthly advocacy days for 2014. OCC advocates visited with 14 Senate offices to discuss the recent introduction of S. 1932/HR 3890, the Better Care, Lower Cost Act, with Senate staff, which was introduced on Jan. 15 by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) on the Senate side and U.S. Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Peter Welch (D-VT) on the House side. This bipartisan legislation aims to provide better care at a lower cost for the millions of Medicare beneficiaries living with multiple chronic conditions.

In other advocacy news, President Obama's nominee for Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said in his opening statement, that if confirmed by the Senate, one of his high-priority areas would be obesity. Find out more about TOS's efforts in Washington in the February Capitol Update here.

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Save the Date for ObesityWeek™ 2014: Nov. 2-7 in Boston, MA
TOS
Mark your calendars for Nov. 2 - 7, 2014 and plan your travel to "The Bay State." For the second year of ObesityWeek™, we are taking the combined TOS and American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) annual meetings to Boston, Massachusetts. This leading scientific and educational obesity conference covers the full scope of the obesity issue from cutting-edge basic science and clinical research to intervention and public policy. Find more information about the success of last year's meeting here and stay up to date on the latest at ObesityWeek.com.
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SPONSORED CONTENT


Grant Award Opportunity for Child Advocates in Health, Medicine or Science
TOS
Get recognized for your work to help children. The World of Children is seeking nominations for the 2013 Health Award recognizing an individual who has made a significant contribution to children in the fields of health, medicine or the sciences. The organization provides funding and recognition to individuals working on behalf of vulnerable children worldwide. Online nominations will be accepted through April 1, 2013. Learn more about the awards and the nomination process here.
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Webinar (Friday!): Learn More About the ABOM Certification Exam
TOS
Interested in finding out more about the ABOM certification exam? Join the ABOM for a webinar about exam eligibility requirements and relevant dates in 2014. A Q&A will follow a brief presentation. Sign up for one of two available options:
    1. Feb. 21 at 10:00AM MST — Register here.
    2. Feb. 21 at 12:00PM MST — Register here.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with instructions to join the webinar.

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Free Online CME for Obesity Management
TOS
TOS and Vindico Medical Education offer an Expert Video Interview Series now live on TheDoctorschannel.Com. The series features leading obesity experts providing guidance for physicians on the importance of weight loss for health and identifying the best treatment plan to meet each individual's needs. The video series is available for a total of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ (0.25 credits per video) and will expire on Dec. 17, 2014. Check out the materials online here and don't miss this opportunity to learn from the following obesity experts:
  • Ken Fujioka, MD, Scripps Clinic
  • Robert Kushner, MD, FACP, Northwestern University
  • Donna H. Ryan MD, FACP, Pennington Biomedical Research Center
  • Holly R. Wyatt, MD, University of Colorado Denver
  • W. Timothy Garvey, MD, UAB Diabetes Research and Training Center
  • Anne Wolf, MS, RD, Anne Wolf & Associates
TOS is proud to have participated in this effort as part of its Treat Obesity Seriously campaign, an effort to encourage the treatment of obesity as a disease and support healthcare providers in their work with people affected by obesity and overweight.

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FREE ACCESS: Obesity Treatment Guidelines
TOS
Long-awaited treatment guidelines on how to manage overweight and obesity are published in the journal, Obesity. TOS played a critical role in the development of these guidelines, as health professionals have waited 13 years since the last guidelines from the National Heart Lung & Blood Institute were released.

This is a very important publication for the Obesity journal and we hope that you will join us in spreading the word by sharing the link to the Obesity guidelines here.

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TOS Announces New Section: Bio-Behavioral Research
TOS
TOS is pleased to announce the addition of a new Section: Bio-Behavioral Research. The purpose of this Section is to support and encourage research on the complex interactions between biological, behavioral, and environmental factors that influence obesity. The Section also aims to advocate for an approach to research, treatment, and prevention that considers and integrates both behavioral and biological aspects of obesity and obesity-related disease. Find out more and join the Section here.
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Job Listings Exclusively for the Obesity Community
TOS
Attention employers, recruiters and job seekers! TOS offers an opportunity to connect you with others exclusively in the obesity community through our online Job Center. Jobseekers can post an anonymous resume, search for listed jobs and create a personalized job alert. Recruiters can search for the best candidate and post jobs all at the click of a button. Check out the Job Center here.
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28 CME Credits Available

Minimally Invasive Surgery Symposium (MISS),
February 26 – March 1, 2014, Las Vegas
Topics: Metabolic/Bariatric, Colon, Hernia, and Foregut.
Keynote Speaker Jeffrey I. Mechanick, MD, President of AACE


OBESITY IN THE NEWS


Getting weight-loss surgery often difficult for patients
Milkwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel
Like 78 million other Americans, MaryJane Harrison is obese. And like many critically overweight Americans, Harrison cannot afford to have weight loss surgery because her health insurance doesn't cover it. The financial burden makes it nearly impossible for her to follow the advice of three physicians who have prescribed the stomach-shrinking procedure for Harrison, who is four feet, 10 inches and weighs 265 pounds.
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Geographic variation of human gut microbes linked to obesity
Nature World News
Individuals who live in cold, northern latitudes have bacteria in their guts that may predispose them to obesity, concludes a new study by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Arizona, Tucson. The researchers analyzed gut microbes of more than a thousand people around the world and found those living in northern latitudes had more obesity linked gut bacteria than their southern counterparts.
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Study: Turning the table on kids' 'weight fate': Obesity risk begins before school age
Associated Press via Detroit Free Press
Those efforts to fight obesity in schools? Think younger. A new study finds that much of a child's "weight fate" is set by age five, and that nearly half of kids who became obese by the eighth grade were already overweight when they started kindergarten. The prevalence of weight problems has long been known — about a third of U.S. kids are overweight or obese. But surprisingly little is known about which kids will develop obesity, and at what age.
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The case for health-warning labels on soda
The Atlantic
Imagine you are at the beach in Malibu. The weather is perfect, the ocean is shimmering, and you are thirsty. You buy a Coke from a nearby bodega and prepare to take a hefty swig, only to be met with the following text: "STATE OF CALIFORNIA SAFETY WARNING: Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay."
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What causes obesity? Cars, TVs, computers
ConsumerAffairs
The cause of the obesity epidemic is a favorite topic of pundits, scientists and just about everyone else. Some blame fast food, others zoom in on sugary soft drinks while still others go on and on about lack of exercise. A group of Canadian researchers have taken a different approach. Looking at data from 150,000 adults in 17 countries, they found that the primary villains are cars, computers and TVs. The study, led by Simon Fraser University health sciences professor Scott Lear, is published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
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Bariatric surgery may stunt aging mechanism
General Surgery News
Bariatric surgery may reverse the shrinkage of telomeres, the caps on the ends of each strand of DNA that are considered markers for biological aging, according to a small, preliminary study presented at ObesityWeek™. "This is the first study to demonstrate that surgical weight loss leads to decreased aging by increasing telomere length," said lead author John M. Morton, MD, MPH, director of bariatric surgery, Stanford University in Stanford, Calif.
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Retrofitting hospitals for obese patients
Modern Healthcare
Facing an increasing number of morbidly obese patients, U.S. hospitals need to invest in architectural designs and equipment to safely and effectively serve these patients, experts say. That includes widening everything from CT scanners to toilets to waiting room chairs to hospital gowns. They say these changes are necessary not only for the patients' safety and comfort, but for the safety of hospital staff.
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Nutrisystem expands Science Advisory Board
El Paso Times
Nutrisystem, Inc., a leading provider of weight management products and services, announced today the expansion of its Science Advisory Board to broaden and deepen scientific understanding relevant to Nutrisystem® programs and products. The board is now composed of a team of renowned professionals, each with distinct backgrounds and expertise, who will help Nutrisystem evaluate existing research as well as develop new programs of research related to the weight loss industry.
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The Obesity Society eNews
Mollie Turner, News Editor, The Obesity Society  
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Caitlin McNeely, Content Editor, 469.420.2692   
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Disclaimer: eNews is a digest of the most important news selected for The Obesity Society from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. The Obesity Society does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of The Obesity Society.

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