Any sort of conversation between a doctor and a patient depends on the mindset of the both the parties involved. A perfect example of this scenario is a study conducted by experts at John Hopkins School of Public Health, which claims that normal weight doctors are more likely to indulge in weight loss discussions with patients, as compared to overweight counterparts.
Around 5000 primary care physicians were surveyed in the trial with respect to obesity diagnosis, self-efficiency of the physician, beliefs of role modeling and weight loss advice. As per the outcomes, physicians with normal BMI apparently engaged in weight loss conversations with their patients, relative to obese doctors. Moreover, normal weight physicians also exhibited more confidence with regards to weight loss counseling and advice.
“While our results suggest that obesity practices and beliefs differ by physician BMI, more research is need to understand the full impact of physician BMI on obesity care. Physician self-efficacy to care for obese patients, regardless of their BMI, may be improved by targeting physician well-being and enhancing the quality of obesity-related training in medical school, residency or continuing medical education,” remarked Sara Bleich, PhD, lead author of the study and an assistant professor with the Bloomberg School’s Department of Health Policy and Management.
Notably, doctors who weighed normally also appeared to be successful in helping their patients lose weight by prescription of weight loss medications and avenues. The authors believe that irrespective of the BMI, obesity training in medical institutions could improve physicians’ efficacy of dealing with obese patients.
The study titled, ‘Impact of Physician BMI on Obesity Care and Beliefs’ is published in the journal, Obesity.