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Over 300 Polish doctors already have overweight and obesity treatment certificates. Over 1,000 more are under certification. The National Certification and Accreditation Program of the Polish Society for Obesity Research was recognized as the Best National Training Program for He alth Professionals in Europe in 2022. How and where can Polish overweight and obese patients be treated?

Obesity (from Englishobesity - obesity ) is a specialist in the treatment of overweight and obesity. Why do we need obese people?

- To professionally and reliably diagnose and treat approx. 27 million Poles who are overweight, including over 7 million already suffering from obesity. We, overweight and obese patients, need a professional approach to our disease. We are tired of sending us outside the doctor's office saying "lose weight first", "eat less", "move more". Look at these numbers. It is high time to stop deluding ourselves that prevention is enough for us. It's high time to finally treat obesity like any other disease - explainsMagdalena Gajda , President of the OD-WAGA Foundation, Social Ombudsman for Obesity Patients.

There is no doctor so …

The Polish Society for Obesity Research (PTBO) and the patient organization - the OD-WAGA Foundation have been calling for the introduction of the obesity specialist's specialization for years. They hear the same from every minister of he alth: " we have too much specialization, we do not need another ", and the number of patients who develop obesity is increasing.

- Polish doctors are not aware that obesity is a disease that requires comprehensive treatment, and during medical studies they do not learn how to treat this complicated disease - explainsprof. Magdalena Olszanecka-Glinianowicz , President of the Polish Society for the Study of Obesity. - People suffering from obesity complain that doctors downplay their disease and order their patients to find ways to reduce excess body weight. Since consultations of dietitians in Poland are not reimbursed by the state budget, Poles with overweight and obesity who want to reduce body weight use general dietary recommendations, as well as short-term, unadjusted diets to their he alth condition.and dietary supplements, illegal drugs and dangerous weight loss products as well as unreliable methods of losing weight.

To ensure that overweight and obese people have access to specialist treatment and to h alt the development of the disease, PTBO implements a special training program in the field of obesitology.

Poland is the best in Europe!

The Polish PTBO Certification and Accreditation Program is addressed to doctors of these specializations to whom overweight and obese people seek help, i.e .: family medicine, internal medicine, diabetology, endocrinology, psychiatry, cardiology, general surgery, paediatrics, dermatology, venereology, gastroenterology, obstetrics and gynecology, nephrology, hypertensiology and allergology.

The Program was launched in April 2022. Since then, the certificate of treatment of overweight and obesity has been granted to 340 doctors, and another 1300 are under the certification process - see: For those doctors who wanted to learn about obesity and modern methods of its treatment, 40 educational workshops were organized in 16 Polish cities. It was conducted by 25 experts in obesitology, and over 2,000 doctors participated in them. 5 medical facilities have obtained accreditation of a professional treatment center for overweight and obesity.

Certification and Accreditation Program of the Polish Association for Obesity Researchhas been recognized by the European Society for the Study of Obesity (EASO) asBest National Training Program for He alth Professionals 2022( The Best National Training Program for He alth Professionals ) across Europe. The EASO Awards are given each year on theEuropean Obesity Day , which always falls on the third Saturday in May - this year: May 18. On behalf of the project implementers, the award was received by prof. Magdalena Olszanecka - Glinianowicz, and it happened on May 16, in Brussels, during the European conference on the creation of national systems for the treatment of overweight and obesity.

To the obesitologist?

The task of an obesitologist is first to diagnose the causes of overweight or obesity in a patient, and then to determine the treatment path.

Overweight and obesity grade I and II patients are usually treated with the so-called conservative method, consisting in changing the diet and increasing physical activity. Conservative treatment is supplemented with pharmacotherapy. There are already 3 prescription drugs available on the Polish market to support weight reduction.

In conservative and pharmacological treatment, the obesitologist cooperates with supporting specialists: a dietitian,a psychologist and physiotherapist, as well as doctors of other speci alties, if it is necessary to implement the treatment of diseases that are complications of obesity, e.g. high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoarthritis, etc.

This will be useful to you

Addresses to doctors with overweight and obesity treatment certificates are available on the platform:

Patients with 2nd degree obesity and comorbidities and 3rd degree obesity are referred to a bariatric surgeon for consultation by an obesitologist to consider surgical treatment. In Poland, 4 types of bariatric surgeries are performed: sleeve gastrectomy, gastric by-pass and mini gastric by-pass and, less and less often, insertion of a gastric band.

Bariatric surgeries for both groups of patients are reimbursed by the National He alth Fund and are carried out by approximately 30 hospitals throughout the country. About half of them operate support groups for bariatric patients - the vast majority under the aegis of the CHLO Bariatric Patient Association.

From 2022 there is also the service: Obesity under the scalpel, where patients before and after bariatric surgeries will find detailed information on, among others, prepare for the procedure and how to live after it, as well as the addresses of hospitals.

Important supports safe treatment and a dignified life of people suffering from obesity. This article does not contain discriminatory and stigmatizing content of people suffering from obesity.

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