Over half of all adults in the UK are overweight, according to latest figures. The number of people who are obese has tripled over the last 20 years, and is still rising. But is weight management an issue for primary healthcare teams? There is clear evidence that it is – with obesity being directly related to increased risk of death and a range of chronic diseases. Obesity reduces life expectancy, on average, by nine years.
At long last there is some encouragement for general practices to optimise detection and management of obesity. The new General Medical Services (GMS) contract includes 208 from a total of 1050 points available in the Quality and Outcomes Framework that are affected by weight loss, offering a major financial incentive to general practices to encourage patients to lose weight.