ValleyCare's Medical Weight Loss Program is designed to assist obese people in improving their quality of life using diet and lifestyle changes, exercise, education, behavior modification and medical monitoring for weight reduction. Our staff members are experienced in working with obese patients and are truly compassionate and eager to help. Our multidisciplinary team consists of a physician, nurse practitioner, registered dietitians, physical therapists and clinical psychologists to assist you in reaching your weight loss goals.
Medical Weight Loss Program Overview
- Physician referral to enter program
- FREE Information Seminar (download class flyer)
- Welcome to the Program
- Medical assessment by nurse practitioner
- Dietary assessment and weight loss meal plan by registered dietitian
- Initiation of exercise program; guidance by physical therapist
- Regular weight checks and evaluations of progress
- Education classes to assist with healthy eating/meal planning, exercise and behavior modification
- Consideration of prescription medication to enhance weight loss
- Medical monitoring of weight loss and changes in health conditions
- Opportunity to see clinical psychologist or therapist as needed
- Twice monthly support groups facilitated by healthcare professional
Who Is Eligible?
Anyone whose body mass index (BMI) is 25 or greater can be considered for this weight loss program. Calculate your BMI here. Depending on your age, health status, degree of obesity and dietary habits; the healthcare team will help determine an approach to weight loss that is best for you. Motivation to make permanent diet and lifestyle changes is necessary for all patients desiring weight loss and improved quality of life.
Medical Weight Loss
Many people desire weight loss, but need professional help to make sure the approach is safe, effective and permanent. Sometimes, a medication to aid in weight loss is needed to assist with appetite control and dietary changes. Most people can achieve their weight and health goals with medical weight loss, though some patients may choose bariatric surgery. Some post-surgery patients may want to enroll in this medical program to maximize their surgical weight loss or to get back on track if they are struggling to maintain the needed lifestyle changes for long-term weight control.
Insurance for Medical Weight Loss
Obesity is defined as a disease or medical condition by the American Medical Association. Screening and counseling for obesity by a primary care provider or nurse practitioner will be covered by most insurers under the preventive services benefit of the Affordable Care Act. How each insurance company does this is individually determined.
Check with your insurance provider to:
- Ensure that treatment for obesity is a covered benefit
- Understand what treatment options are covered and the extent of the coverage
- Learn if any specific criteria are required for insurance approval
- Ascertain if ValleyCare is an allowed hospital within your plan
A nurse practitioner (NP) will perform a medical evaluation, discuss obesity treatment with you and oversee your progress throughout the program. She will also guide you on appropriate exercise for weight loss and refer you to an exercise specialist when needed. The NP will meet with you regularly and monitor your health as you are losing weight.
A registered dietitian (RD) oversees the dietary component of patient care. The dietitian will perform the dietary assessment in the initial evaluation, assist in developing a meal plan and behavior modification plan, provide information and guidance on dietary concerns and help you plan for long-term weight management.
An exercise specialist will provide group education on proper techniques for healthy weight loss, strength building, flexibility and conditioning.
A clinical psychologist will provide group education on the psychological component of weight loss. She may provide direction and support for the emotional component of behavior change and can help you prepare for the lifestyle changes you will be making. She can also help you in a private setting if you struggle with emotional eating or compulsive eating behaviors.