The CSU wants to cut the number of obese Germans with a screening programme. This was outliend by the Deputy Union Party leader John Singhammer at the „Sueddeutsche Zeitung“. Otherwise, the health system would collapse in 10 to 20 years because of too many fat people. The rise of obesity is, in his opinion, scary in recent years.
Moreover, politicians have called for the use of good financial health advice from sickness funds and the health fund itself to tackle the obesity. There should be a clause included in the Prevention Act, which will make targeted weight loss and better nutrition possible through incentives. It is conceivable to be granted a reduction in health insurance contribution as a reward for successful weight management.
In connection with the political demands, there has also recently been the „Study on Adult Health in Germany“ (DEGS) showing an increase in the overweight category (BMI> 30) in Germany. After the trial, almost every fourth German is obese. But while the number of obese people (BMI 25-29.9) has stabilized at this level, the number of obese people in Germany is rising steadily. There is now 23.3 percent of men and 23.9 percent of women with a BMI over 30. The 1998 figure was 18.9 percent among men and 22.5 percent among women. Especially among young men and women at the age of 35, increases are particularly apparent. A forecast suggest that, over the next six years, 24 million obese people in Germany.
There is a definite tendency to become heavier in the future population. Besides the personal limitations of those affected and the risk of developing cancer or diabetes for example, there are also implications for the manufacturers, which are particularly active in the area of rehabilitation aids from bath lifts to the Suhl care bed. There are some tools that have a „patient-supporting“ function and must be designed for the future weight trends.
Looking abroad – and especially to the United States where, according to a forecast by the OECD, 75 percent of all Americans will be obese by the year 2020 – it is perhaps a little early for Germany to have a real XXL-patient specific market. Nevertheless, the manufacturers who pioneered the marketing of this segment have a distinct advantage. Questions here include which aids products will be in particularly strong demand, and what other market segments in the healthcare industry could expand as a result of this trend?