Aim An increase in the number of obesity cases is a complex challenge for the local health care systems and the specialists who work there. Nurse's tasks understood as preparing a patient for starting his or her treatment and providing support during therapy require developing proper competences which take into account the needs of patients. Material and methods In the national study, we have asked 621 patients with obesity (BMI>30) about their experience and expectations in their relations with the employees of medical institutions. The study was conducted with the use of the CAWI method, based on an original, self-prepared survey questionnaire. Results 70 per cent of the patients who have responded to our survey declared they were ready to begin obesity treatment. Only 19 per cent of them had spoken to a nurse or a midwife about obesity but as many as 51 per cent reported inappropriate behaviour on their part. Conclusions Most of the participants of our study have declared their will to start obesity treatment. However, due to previous failures to reduce body mass, they require a proper support from medical staff. Nurses should initiate dialogue concerning a patient's obesity, focus on providing information concerning various diagnostic or therapeutic methods. The training in communication with a patient who suffers from obesity should include anti-discrimination education.