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Dr. Jeffrey Mechanick Part 7, Government Assistance

Dr. Jeffrey Mechanick talks with Diabetes in Control Publisher Steve Freed at the 2016 AACE Meeting. In part 7 of this Exclusive Interview, Dr. Mechanick shares his thoughts on government assistance and diabetes: what healthcare professionals should do to affect change in government legislation.

Dr. Jeffrey Mechanick, MD, FACP, FACE, FNLA is the Clinical Professor of Medicine and Director of Metabolic Support in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, NY. Dr. Mechanick was chosen president of the American College of Endocrinology (ACE) in May 2016, an office he will hold for one year. His current research interests are in nutrition and metabolic support, lifestyle and obesity medicine, and network analysis of complex systems.

Transcript of this video segment:

Steve Freed: If you go to the government and say we need to get reimbursed for this and for this and for this, it’s just not going to happen that way. Even though, I think all the studies have shown that preventative health, paying for it up front, is going to save money on the back end, but it’s very difficult to show people that, you need to get this to get this result. It’s going to take time. What are your thoughts on that?

Dr. Mechanick:  So, that’s our challenge. There are those that believe that for these chronic complex diseases, like obesity and diabetes that it’s hopeless. That we have no ability to change legislation, to change behavioral economics, to change the way Washington works, and although it’s hard, we know that’s not true. We know that the nature of our government is designed for change even though it may be difficult, even though it may take some time. I don’t think the question should be framed that it’s hopeless. I think the question should be framed, how we as health care professionals adapt to this latency between what we need now and what we can realistically expect at some point in the future? I don’t think I can offer you really an answer right now but this is a high priority for American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, this is a high priority for many of the major medical centers and health care systems around the country, a high priority for other professional medical organizations. The answer is going to be collaboration. We need to have everybody pull their resources together. We need to have consensus, we need to have as close to a single voice as possible and with that critical mass, I am confident that we will be able to affect some change.

To view other segments in this video series:

Part 1: Nutrition and Lifestyle
Part 2: Effective Diet Discussions
Part 3: Simplifying Aspects of Diabetes Care
Part 4: Influx of Prediabetes Patients
Part 5: Tips to Alter Lifestyle
Part 6: Bariatric Surgery and Obesity Treatment