Role Of Allied Health Professionals In Assessment Of The Obese Patient

The evaluation proposed here is extensive. It may be unrealistic to expect a busy clinician to obtain, evaluate, and counsel around all the information that could be discussed with an obese patient. An alternative is to identify individuals with unique skills and specialized resources in the clinical environment who can be brought into service during the evaluation and treatment of these patients. Examples include registered dieticians to assist in evaluation of the diet, exercise physiologists who help with assessing exercise capacity and the safety of initiating an exercise program, psychologists or psychiatrists to help evaluate and treat psychological comorbidities such as depression, pharmacists who have an interest in weight loss medications, and surgeons who have experience in bariatric surgery. If a clinician is interested in taking a more active role in managing obesity in his or her practice it will be useful to identify resources in the community to refer patients to. Having written materials available to patients in the office will make these referrals more efficient for both the care provider and the patient.

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