Lancashire's obesity epidemic blocking hospital beds
A national fatness test has revealed Lancashire is the third worst area in England for hospital admissions due to obesity.
More than 11,000 patients were taken into hospitals in the county for weight-related conditions during 2014/15, with only Hertfordshire and Cornwall treating more.
The news comes just 48 hours after County Hall launched a new service to encourage Lancastrians to lose weight and live a more active and healthy lifestyle.
“Statistics also show that only 56 per cent of adults across Lancashire are achieving the recommended two and half hours of moderate to vigorous physical activity each week, contributing towards an increase in problems such as high blood pressure and strokes,” revealed Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, LCC’s director of public health.
“Obesity is one of the biggest preventable causes of early death alongside smoking. As well as shortening people’s life expectancy, obesity can lead to many more years of poor health and is a major cause of diabetes, heart disease and cancer, and other conditions.”
Nationally hospital admissions caused by obesity have now reached an all-time high, according to a new report. There were more than 440,000 admissions during the past year - a staggering 10 TIMES higher than a decade ago.
The report by the Health and Social Care Information Centre revealed women were almost twice as likely to be admitted for weight-related problems. Children below the age of 16 accounted for 3,357 cases across England, with a further 28,321 young people between 16 and 24.
Dr Karunanithi said Lancashire’s initiative would include specific programmes tailored to suit people’s needs.
“People will learn about the best approaches to weight loss and about the factors that have caused them to gain weight in the first place.
“This will help them to change their behaviour meaning they can maintain a healthy weight.”