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Rise in under-16 obesity admissions

There has been a 12% rise in the number of under-16s admitted to hospital for obesity in the last year, figures show.

Data from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) for 2012/13 reveals 560 youngsters were admitted to hospital for obesity, up from 500 in 2011/12.

Across all ages, obesity admissions across England were lower for every age group except the under-16s and those aged 65 and over.

Among these older people, there was a 6% rise year-on-year, from 560 admissions in 2011/12 to 590 in 2012/13.

The data also showed that t wice as many women as men are admitted to hospital for obesity, in a trend spanning the last decade

For the 10th year running, obesity admissions for women were much higher than those for men across the whole of England.

In 2012/13, there were 8,010 admissions for women compared to 2,950 for men. In 2011/12, there were 8,740 admissions for women and 2,990 admissions for men.

Around a decade ago, in 2002/03, just 850 women and 430 men were admitted to hospital for obesity.

Weight-loss surgery was also three times as common in women (6,080 out of 8,020 procedures) than in men (1,940). This trend in more women going under the knife also spans the last decade.

Alan Perkins, chief executive of the HSCIC, said: "Obesity has been a public health issue for many years and can increase the risk of disease and long-term illness.

"Despite a recorded fall in admissions, hospitals still admitted over 10,000 cases with a primary diagnosis of obesity last year."

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: " We are serious about tackling obesity and are already making progress. Rates of child obesity have started to fall, and are at their lowest since 1998, but we know we still have much further to go.

"We've given local authorities the power, freedom and protected funding to make sure they can tackle obesity in their local areas.

"However, everyone has a role to play to tackle obesity. The Change4Life campaign offers advice to families on how to improve their diet and lifestyle.

"We are working with industry to reduce fat, sugar and salt in foods to empower consumers to make healthier choices."


From Belfast Telegraph