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Linking care of patients with obesity to outpatient weight control clinics following acute hospitalizations

Authors Harris CM, Cheskin LJ, Gipson-Jones TL, Hartfield JA, Kisuule F

Received 3 October 2017

Accepted for publication 27 December 2017

Published 24 January 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 11—14


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ming-Hui Zou

Ché M Harris,1 Lawrence J Cheskin,2 Trina L Gipson-Jones,3 Jennifer A Hartfield,4 Flora Kisuule1

1Division of General Internal Medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 2Department of Health, Behavior and Society, The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA; 3School of Nursing, Hampton University, Hampton, VA, USA; 4Center for Research on Men’s Health, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, USA

Abstract: Despite obesity impacting over one-third of US adults, guideline recommendations have not been effectively utilized by health care providers in hospital settings. Initiation of weight loss plans for obese patients during hospitalizations followed by linkage of care to weight control centers may improve compliance with the guidelines. Provider recognition and awareness that obesity is a chronic condition that warrants inpatient counsel and management with appropriate arrangement of postdischarge follow-up care will be critical to guideline implementation.

Keywords: guideline compliance, health systems, intervention, linkage

Current knowledge

•Health care providers do not routinely address obesity and weight loss strategies.

•Obesity guidelines are underutilized by health care providers.

Contribution to the literature

•Linking patients to weight control centers after hospital discharge may improve weight loss goals and patient outcomes.

•Linking patients to weight control clinics following hospitalizations may help providers and hospitals to meet recommended obesity guidelines.

•This perspective piece addresses opportunity for providers to engage with hospitalized patients and help with initiation of long-term weight loss strategies.


This study was supported by a grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to the University of Mississippi Medical Center (1R25HL126145-01 – MPI-Dr. Bettina Beech, DrPH, MPH; Dean, Bower School of Population Health; The University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS, USA. Dr. Keith Norris, MD, PhD; Ronald Reagan University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA).

Author contributions

All authors contributed toward data analysis, drafting and revising the paper and agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work.


Dr. Lawrence J Cheskin is a founder and director of the Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center and is Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of Medifast, Inc. The other authors report no conflicts of interest in this work.



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