This is the opinion of the Dutch Obesity Clinic (NOK). According to the specialized clinic, which collaborates with regular hospitals, “more and more people are aware that being overweight greatly increases the risk of serious complications from a corona infection,” says director Kobus Dijkhorst.
Treatment capacity greatly expanded
Between September 2020 and September 2021, 8,050 people signed up for obesity treatment, according to the NOK. The year before, there were 7,000 registrations.
After reporting by De Telegraaf about the sharp increase in demand for gastric reductions, the NOK announced that the clinic, in collaboration with the LangeLand and Rivierenland hospitals, will expand its treatment capacity by 1,300 operations.
In this way, the backlogs created by the pandemic should be eliminated.
People who receive obesity treatment are not operated on alone. They also follow a program aimed at improving their lifestyle. Health insurers reimburse this type of treatment from the basic insurance.
Even apart from the corona outbreak, the number of stomach reductions has been increasing for years. The NOK calculates that more than 1.5 percent of Dutch people aged 20 and older are morbidly obese today. That’s almost 200,000 people.