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JCOM Abstract

J Clin Outcomes Manage 
2012 May;19(5):221-229
How to deliver high-quality obesity counseling in primary care using the 5As framework
Schlair S, Moore S, McMacken M, Jay M

Abstract Objective: To review the content of the 5As of obesity counseling for primary care physicians as well as strategies to efficiently address the 5As during a typical 20-minute visit. Methods: Review of the literature. Results: Obese patients are evaluated in the primary care setting for multiple weight-related comorbidities and often seek help from their primary care providers to lose weight. Several studies have suggested that physicians and other providers do not adequately counsel obese patients about their weight because of barriers such as poor reimbursement, lack of obesity-related counseling skills, and lack of time. The 5As (Assess, Advise, Agree, Assist, Arrange) is an evidence-based, behavior-change counseling framework endorsed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the United States Preventive Services Task Force. Conclusion: With the recent announcement that Medicare will now cover intensive behavioral counseling for obese patients, more providers may be interested in gaining the necessary skills to provide high-quality weight management counseling.

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