Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Health costs and obesity

Given the amount of space devoted to obesity as a topic within the health and wellness media, you'd maybe think that obesity was a major strain on NHS resources.

But according to the findings of a recent study, it looks as though this may not be the case. Research was carried out by the UK's Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), who believe that ...

argument in favour of fat taxes could be on the grounds of the obese imposing a disproportionate burden on the British National Health Service. However, against this there is some evidence that the obese have shorter life expectancies and therefore are less likely to require the even greater long term costs of geriatric care.

You can read this very interesting (and thought provoking) article in full here.

It's difficult to say whether a fat tax would have much efficacy - especially in light of the fact that we're not in a situation of talking from experience - only informed conjecture as to what might happen. 

And while it may be the case that obese people have shorter life expectancies - it would still be a reflection on the nation's health as a whole if the status quo were to go unchanged and people die younger due to being overweight to this degree.

So, though there may be a link between obesity and the NHS - the onus will still be on government to ensure as many as possible live as healthy as possible regardless of whether that means the individual require geriatric care later on.

the question is whether a 'fat tax' would have a slimming effect on the nation. What do you think?

No comments:

Post a Comment