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Public health: Obesity - Essay Example

The research paper “Public health: Obesity” evaluates the current programmes that have been implemented to counter the problem of obesity in the United Kingdom and assess their success. The concept of health cannot be merely considered as an individual’s onus but the public as well as state has a crucial role in sharing the collective responsibility for ensuring health and preventing diseases within the society. Every person needs to appreciate the significance of maintaining health of all individuals and preventing the occurrence of diseases within the community. Similarly, the governments of nations also need to acknowledge their responsibility in this regard and take all necessary steps for providing a disease free environment to their citizens. Obesity is a problem that has affected a large number of people, including women and children in the UK. Obesity can be understood as a serious “disorder” that occurs from the accumulation of “excess body fat” to an extent that can adversely affect health. Body fatness is usually measured in terms of Body Mass Index (BMI) and it is calculated as “weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in metres”. The concept of public health evolves from the premise of preventive healthcare strategy for the entire community rather than curative healthcare to individuals. While healthcare plans and programs are oriented towards individual patients, public health measures focus on the community as a whole and will fetch benefits for a larger chunk of the society....
The concept of public health evolves from the premise of preventive healthcare strategy for the entire community rather than curative healthcare to individuals. While healthcare plans and programmes are oriented towards individual patients, public health measures focus on the community as a whole and will, therefore, fetch benefits for a larger chunk of the society. This will also help in preventing the occurrence and spread of diseases and, therefore, is a more result oriented measure than curative treatment for individuals. In his article titled, “Public Health is More Important than Health Care,” Larry Gordon emphasises the need for political leaders to appreciate the fact that public health programmes have fetched more results and will continue to do so to “improve the status of the nation’s health than all the healthcare measures combined” (Gordon, 1993). The author also finds that health care receives better funding whereas public health programmes do not receive adequate funds and also the “national healthcare reform efforts are being designed to contain healthcare costs and improve access to health care – not public health” (Gordon, 1993). Thus, it becomes evident that concerned authorities need to recognise the significance of public health for maintaining and enhancing the quality of life and environment of the public in general. A public health problem can be perceived as any disease that affects a larger segment of the population, which requires the concerted efforts of the society for its prevention. The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that around “six billion” of the world population are overweight, out of which “300 million” are ...Show more
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Summary

This paper defines obesity as a major public health problem in the UK as it has reached an epidemic proportion in the country, affecting a large number of the population, including women and children. It explains the significance of this problem and its overall on public health in the country…
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