NEW YORK, October 28, 2015—Overweight or obese Americans with private health insurance are more likely to take steps to lose weight and to speak with their physician about weight-loss strategies than patients without health insurance, according to new data from Kantar Health’s National Health and Wellness Survey, supported by Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc. Approximately 70 percent of overweight or obese adults who have private insurance are taking active steps to lose weight, compared with two in three without insurance. Of those, 51 percent of overweight or obese adults with insurance have spoken with their physician, compared with 32 percent of those without insurance.
“Obesity is associated with many weight-related comorbidities, most commonly type 2 diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidemia and has been associated with an increased risk of other conditions, such as stroke, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, respiratory problems and some cancers,” said Jonathan Chapnick, vice president, client consulting, Kantar Health. “Obesity is estimated to lead to medical care costs of $147 billion annually. For these reasons it’s important for physicians to work with their patients to improve their overall health.”
The majority of both insured and uninsured patients used lifestyle modification (e.g., diet and exercise), which is the foundational treatment recommendation for weight management. People with private insurance were more likely to consult a specialist or use a weight management program than the uninsured. Likewise, those with insurance were more likely to utilize prescription drugs or undergo a surgical procedure to control their weight.
“With obesity remaining a significant health issue not only in the United States but also around the world, payers need more information to make informed decisions based on the needs of their member populations, such as the impact of providing coverage of various obesity interventions,” Chapnick said.
About the National Health and Wellness Survey (NHWS)
The study’s results were drawn from the 2013 U.S. NHWS, a nationally representative, self-administered survey conducted annually. Respondents were provided with a list of conditions and asked which they had experienced and been diagnosed with. Topics covered include the health status, attitudes, behaviors and outcomes among adults 18 or older.
Kantar Health conducts the NHWS in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Latin America. The survey is the largest self-reported dataset in the healthcare industry.
About Kantar Health
Kantar Health is a leading global healthcare consulting firm and trusted advisor to many pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device and diagnostic companies worldwide. It combines evidence-based research capabilities with deep scientific, therapeutic and clinical knowledge, commercial development know-how, and brand and marketing expertise to help clients evaluate opportunities, launch products and maintain brand and market leadership.
Kantar Health deeply understands the influence of patients, payers and physicians, especially as they relate to the performance and payment of medicines and the delivery of healthcare services. Its 600+ healthcare industry specialists work across the product lifecycle, from preclinical development to launch, acting as catalysts to successful decision-making in life sciences and helping clients prioritize their product development and portfolio activities, differentiate their brands and drive product success post-launch. Kantar Health is part of Kantar, the data investment management division of WPP. For more information, please visit www.kantarhealth.com.