Patients say insurance coverage for obesity surgeries is ‘overdue’ in Connecticut

Dr. Craig Floch, a bariatric surgeon at St. Vincent's Medical Center in Bridgeport, says obesity is a real crisis in this country, especially during the pandemic.

News 12 Staff

Apr 5, 2021, 9:52 PM

Updated 1,104 days ago

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Connecticut Senate bill 1007, which is being heard by the General Assembly, proposes legislation for insurance coverage on various obesity surgeries – something that patients say is long overdue.
Dr. Craig Floch, a bariatric surgeon at St. Vincent's Medical Center in Bridgeport, says obesity is a real crisis in this country, especially during the pandemic.
"Four out of five people hospitalized with COVID had obesity and those people do much worse than someone of a normal weight,” he said. “They actually are hospitalized more and they die more.”
The surgeries can get rid of diabetes and heart disease.
Kathleen Peckham, from Milford, says she's tried everything to lose weight, but nothing has worked. She says she must get weight loss surgery to stay alive.
"I want to live,” she said. “This is not about being prettier or being cosmetic. This is about – I want to be able to live the rest of my life."
Peckham says without this bill, she will have to dip into her retirement savings just to afford the surgery. Doctors say these surgeries can cost anywhere from $15,000-$30,000.
The bill on the table would make insurance companies cover most of the costs for obesity surgeries. It was brought up recently and has a long way to go. Connecticut is the only state in New England that doesn't have this law.


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