Table of contents


Background papers: Lifestyle and wider determinants :: Healthy weight :: Obesity :: Summary


• Overweight and obesity are terms used to describe increasing degrees of excess body fat.
• Excess weight is a significant risk factor for a number of diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease, and can also affect mental health and self-esteem.
• The prevention and treatment of overweight and obesity is a central public health policy goal.

Key issues and gaps

• Prevalence of excess weight in adults in Medway is estimated to be similar to the England average.
• Prevalence of childhood obesity in Medway is similar to the national average for both 4-5 year olds and 10-11 year olds.
• Prevalence of adult obesity (and therefore costs to the NHS and social care) are projected to rise without significant intervention.
• Obesity in adults is strongly correlated to obesity in children.
• Due to the high prevalence of overweight and obesity whole population approaches are required.
• National data and research suggests that groups at greatest health risk due to obesity are: pregnant women, women of African, Caribbean and Pakistani family origin, and people with physical and learning disability.
• National data shows that deprivation and low income is particularly related to higher prevalence of childhood obesity.

Recommendations for commissioning

• In line with NICE recommendations CCG to commission a tier 3 children's weight management service.
• All Medway Council and Medway CCG contracts to take obesity into account where appropriate, embedding a minimum of one KPI related to obesity (e.g. healthy catering, active travel, etc.
• Follow standard evaluation frameworks in all interventions and allocate a budget for evaluation.
• The NHS and local authority should act as exemplars in promoting healthy food and drink in their venues by adopting the Government Food Buying Standards in all food related contracts.
• As per NICE guidance all health and social care professionals should receive training on how to raise obesity related issues, and assess, discuss and take appropriate action on weight management with clients.
• All health and social care professionals should make every contact count by routinely advising on obesity related issues, including GP staff, midwives, health visitors, and school nurses.
• STP Local Maternity System weight management working group to create specialist midwifery provision to support women above a healthy weight.