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WCHQ Provides Primary Care Tools to Address Obesity

MADISON, WI (March 24, 2023) —– The Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality (WCHQ) today announced the launch of two education elements, a webinar and a toolkit of resources, to help primary care providers in Wisconsin address obesity with their patients. Novo Nordisk Inc. provided funding support for both of the education elements.

Obesity is a long-term health problem that impacts overall health.

  •  In 2019, 32 percent of Wisconsin residents were living with obesity.
  • Obesity is associated with medical conditions such as heart disease, hypertension, high
    cholesterol and diabetes.
  • Societal attitudes toward people living with obesity increase stigma and deter people
    from seeking help.
  • Insurers do not offer a universal benefit for obesity treatment making it difficult for
    people to engage in treatment.

Identifying these serious facts about obesity, WCHQ, with funding from Novo Nordisk, formed an Obesity Advisory Group made up of WCHQ members. Members of the Advisory Group include providers, healthcare quality professionals and others close to the treatment of obesity in Wisconsin health systems. The group collaborated on ways to help primary care providers more effectively address obesity with their patients. The result of the collaboration is a statewide webinar and a toolkit of resources which is housed on the WCHQ website.

“Primary care providers are perfectly positioned to be the point of first contact and continued care for those with obesity,” said Dr. Christopher Weber, Obesity Medicine Director for Ascension Columbia St Mary’s Bariatric Center and an Advisory Group member.

The webinar, entitled “How to Help Patients with Obesity in Your Primary Care Office,” is scheduled for Wednesday, April 26, 11:30AM-1:00PM CST. Samantha Pabich, MD of UW Health in Madison will be the speaker. In addition, to her presentation, Dr. Pabich will unveil the toolkit and give a quick tutorial on how to use it. Toolkit resources include strategies for talking to patients about their weight, providing lifestyle guidance, care plans, surgical options, medical coding and more.

“Helping people achieve and maintain healthy weights cannot be a task just for specialists — there are too many people who could benefit from assistance,” said Dr. Pabich. “We need to give all health care providers access to the tools to help. Many things people have heard about weight management (doctors included) are medical myths. In this toolkit, we have gathered the evidence-based information needed for treating excessive weight retention.”

Anyone interested in the topic of obesity is invited to attend the webinar. Visit for more information or to register.

For nearly two decades, WCHQ has used data and scientific evidence to help its member health systems and medical clinics improve health care quality. Novo Nordisk is a global pharmaceutical manufacturing company focused on defeating serious chronic diseases.


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