Insurance With the Works: Indiana Board Latest to Rule That Employers Must Pay For Weight Loss of Workers

220px-Eq_it-na_pizza-margherita_sep2005_sml79660664-177x150-0-0_Escali+Escali+Glass+Precision+Lithium+Scale+Sage+GThere is an interesting decision out of Indianapolis where a board has ruled that Boston’s Gourmet Pizza must pay for weigh-loss surgery of a 340-pound employee, Adam Childers, after he suffered a back injury at work.

Boston’s Gourmet Pizza will have to pay for a lap-band surgery for Childers under a 4-3 decision of the workers’ compensation board. The company is seeking a rehearing and cannot comprehend the ruling, but, as the company’s slogan says, “Eating is Believing.”

Childers was 25 and weighed 340 pounds when he was accidentally struck by a freezer door in March 2007. The doctors said that he could not fully recover unless he lost weight — particularly after his weight rose to 380 pounds after the surgery. The cost of the weight loss operation would be as much as $25,000.

This is only the latest case to rule that businesses must pay for weight-loss treatments. Indeed, on August 27th, the Oregon Supreme Court ruled that state insurance must cover gastric bypass surgery for a man recovering from knee surgery under the same theory. In that case, Edward G. Sprague initially injured his knee as a mechanic in 1976 when he weighed 225 pounds. He injured his knee again (after an earlier surgery) while working at a bakery (he weighed 320 pounds). For the Oregon story, click here/

The concern is that businesses may be less likely to hire obese people to avoid such added costs.

For the full story, click here

20 thoughts on “Insurance With the Works: Indiana Board Latest to Rule That Employers Must Pay For Weight Loss of Workers”

  1. Jack’s Stack is pretty good. They started as a mom and pop out in Martin City and I used to eat there as a kid all the time. They didn’t have salmon on the menu back then! lol Their operation today is far more “industrial” in scale but they still serve great food. I have a bottle of their sauce in the fridge right now (along with Bryant’s, Gate’s and Adrian’s).

    As far as organic BBQ, I’m not sure. But you’ve piqued by curiosity. I’ll see what I can find out and report back.

  2. Buddah I am not an expert on bbq as I rarely eat it. I did go to a place called Jack Stack’s the last time I drove through Kansas City.I had barbecued salmon.I go to Sonny Bryan’s for the fried okra. Do they have organic bbq places up there yet?

  3. Swarthmore Mom,

    Sorry. Have to disagree. Had Sonny’s. Lots and lots of Sonny’s. It’s the best you can get in Texas, but I have 12 places within easy driving distance that can beat Sonny’s any day of the week.

    Sonny’s was the only BBQ I’d eat when I lived there after trying many many others and being universally disappointed. Sonny’s is good. It’s as close to KC as I could get there, but . . .

    It’s not KC good.

    Real BBQ fiends, the kinds who have eaten it all over the country all know KC is the BBQ Mecca. Every area has something to offer. Texas has Sonny’s. Memphis has BB King’s and numerous mom and pops, different style. There’s the mustard based sauces of the Carolina’s (which leave me cold to be honest). And let’s not forget our Asian cousins hoisin and teriyaki nor the Polynesian pit roasted pig. The Caribbean traditions of jerk roasting goats. All are good.

    None compare to what you can get here. It’s not just one place. It’s dozens. All different. All with something special. Some of it has to do with access to good beef.

    Texas may think they’re big at everything, but KC gives the world the beat down on BBQ, not just Texas. Every place has something the do perfectly just like every person has something they are good at.

    KC is BBQ.

    When aliens arrive and want ribs, they are going ask for Arthur Bryant’s. I know. They have a picture of Speilberg on the wall taken while he was dining there with a film crew. Unless it’s those guys from Proxima Centauri. I hear they like Gate’s better than Bryant’s.

  4. Sonny Bryan’s in Dallas beats Kansas City barbecue. Rafflaw the Prof should not go near either of those pizza places although Boston’s is far worse. He should go to Pizzeria Paradiso on P St in DC. It is very good although not Chicago style.

  5. You know raff, when I can’t get my mind off pizza I often think of barbecue.

    I’m sorry. I’m just evil.

    Please note the lowercase “e”. 😀

  6. puzzling,
    I assume you are kidding about the mandated portion of your statement?
    you are scaring me with all of these stories about Chicago style pizza knock offs! I will leave it to Professor Turley to taste test both of these places and report back whether they measure up to real Chicago style deep dish pizza. Now, I am getting hungry just talking about it.

  7. Why worry? Won’t bariatric surgery be covered under national health care?

    … or perhaps mandated?

  8. Boston’s pizza does not even resemble a Chicago pizza. There is a chain “Old Chicago Pizza” that tries to knock it off.

  9. Swarthmore,
    I am glad that Boston’s attempt to rob Chicago of its pizza was unsuccessful according to your taste test. Prof. Turley is correct that the tummy tuck might be necessary if you are eating this alleged pizza too often.

  10. I think the employee can make a real case for this. After surgery one is often bedridden and in need of medications (or at least given medications) that are known to cause weight gain. For example, steroids are given to reduce swelling. If even the most pious among us takes enough steroids, you will gain weight. What I would ask the employee to reconsider is the surgery. There are real risks and some rather poor long term outcomes to this surgery. It would be better to pay for strenghtening exercise, cheaper even in the long term, and not dangerous. Rather it would contribute to overall well-being and health.

    As to failure to hirer fat people, I wouldn’t worry about that. Many people already hate fat people. Despite clear evidence that dieting does not work, that thin and fat people may eat the same diet, including the same number of calories, we still wish to hate fat people. Exercise will help both the thin and the fat to be healthy. It’s where I would put my effort and where, if we really valued our own and other’s health, we would put our effort as a society.

  11. No Prof move to Denmark instead. They ride bikes all the time. There is no need for lipo.

    1. Swarthmore Mom:

      Sure, but that was before the pizza came with free liposuction for employees. I am thinking of applying for a part-time job and a full tummy tuck.

  12. Weight a minute he starts out at 340 and goes to 380 are they supposed to restore him to 340? Will he have a life time obligation to work for this company? Is not eating a choice?
    I am confused about the cause of the accident, weight, freezer door. Sounds unfair to company.

  13. I wish the story had stated how tall this individual is. However, I wonder if the worker got that big eating those Boston Gourmet Pizzas that appear to be a Chicago Style pizza rip off. What makes the Boston pizza gourmet?

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