The text of the bill below is as of Oct 6, 2004 (Received by the Senate).
HCON 34 RDS
H. CON. RES. 34
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
October 6, 2004
October 6, 2004
Expressing the sense of the Congress that private health insurance companies should take a proactive role in promoting healthy lifestyles, and for other purposes.
Whereas Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson acknowledges that $270,000,000,000 in health costs are caused by preventable diseases, including $183,000,000,000 for heart disease alone, and has called current policies of insurance companies ‘wrongheaded’ for not doing more to encourage people to stay healthy to prevent expensive illnesses;
Whereas obesity increases the risk of illness from more than 30 medical conditions, including heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and diabetes, which account for 2/3 of all deaths in the United States;
Whereas 61 percent of adults in the United States (120,000,000 people) are above their target weight, and 13 percent of children and adolescents in the United States are obese or overweight, a figure that has tripled since 1980;
Whereas from age 50 to 70, those who do not perform strength training lose a quarter to a third of a pound of muscle every year and gain the same amount in body fat;
Whereas weight training is proven to increase bone density and reduce osteoporosis among men and women over 50 years old;
Whereas if the more than 88,000,000 inactive adults in the United States began regular exercise, national medical costs would decrease by more than $76,000,000,000 each year;
Whereas on June 20, 2002, President George W. Bush launched the Healthier US fitness initiative to promote a healthy lifestyle and encourage people in the United States to increase their physical fitness; and
Whereas providing incentives for exercise and strength training would help more people become active and healthy and would decrease national medical costs: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That--
(1) the Congress commends Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson for his efforts to encourage private health insurance companies to take action to encourage people in the United States to lead active lifestyles;
(2) it is the sense of the Congress that private health insurance companies should--
(A) do more to encourage people in the United States to lead a healthier and more active lifestyle to prevent expensive and painful illnesses;
(B) provide discounted premiums to those who exercise regularly; and
(C) encourage frequent screening for diseases that are easily treatable in their early stages; and
(3) the Congress applauds private health insurance companies that are already taking these actions.
Passed the House of Representatives October 5, 2004.