I am responding to Charles Constantinou’s request for clarification of Dr Alf’s blog, my comments and the original Daily Mail article.
Let me start by stating that the US has an even bigger obesity crisis than the UK. Many of the issues that arise in the UK are also relevant to the US. Also a large part of the world’s obesity problem is down to the US owned junk-food industry.
Focusing on the UK, this is about the fact that the UK’s NHS (public healthcare system), which costs £100 billion gbp a year, is failing to educate people about the need for healthy eating and nutrition and exercise; the result that we have a diabetes and obesity crisis, and the lowest worker productivity in the G7 by a margin of 16%. NHS hospital floors are having to be strengthened at a cost of £3 million gbp per floor, ambulances at £135,000 gbp each and stretchers at £90,000 gbp each.
On top of this, we in the UK, have 65 County Councils, which are responsible for Adult Social Care who now spend about 50% of their entire budgets on Adult Social Care recipients who are largely woman over the age of 65 who have eaten and drunk too much in their youth and now have a poor range of movement. The houses that they live in have to be modified to accommodate their huge bodies and they cost the NHS huge sums of money for treatments like gastric bands, stomach stapling etc. People who are useful and productive cannot be treated straightaway because these obese people who are economically inactive and usually net consumers of tax revenue are taking up valuable bed space.
Local authorities including unitary authorities, Metropolitan Borough Councils and City Councils then have to charge higher business rates to pay for the armies of social workers and care workers ,nurses and doctors that these people need attention from. That means lower SME business growth and lower tax revenues for Central Government. The NHS is not fit for purpose because it is not dealing with this problem or the environmental causes of obesity and is falling further behind more advanced health care systems in France, Germany, Italy and Singapore.
Returning to the US, it is not clear how Obamacare has addressed the growing crisis of US obesity? US people have got fatter on Obama’s watch! Perhaps, more Obama supporters are obese?