More than 18,000 admissions to hospital for obesity


Obesity - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

More than 18,200 hospital admissions in Norfolk and Waveney were obesity-related in 2019/20. 

This was 2,400 more admissions than in 2018/19, with West Norfolk reporting the greatest year on year increase with 39pc, with 4,460 admissions.

In Norfolk and Waveney, women accounted for two thirds of admissions where obesity was a factor and 84pc of cases where it was the main cause. 

Nationally there were a record 1,022,040 hospital admissions for obesity-related treatment in England in 2019/20, up 17pc from the year before.

North Norfolk, Norwich and South Norfolk saw increases of less than 10pc, with Great Yarmouth reporting a 17pc increase in admissions. 

Nationally admissions where obesity was the main cause fell by 3pc to 10,780 last year, from 11,117 in 2018-19, which is attributed to a fall in the number of bariatric surgeries, including gastric bands and bypasses.

North Norfolk saw the greatest decrease in admissions where obesity was a main factor with cases halving from the year before from 30 to 15. 

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Norwich saw an additional 20 new admissions from 2018/19, an increase of 80pc. 

This is despite three of the five former Clinical Commissioning Group areas seeing no changes in the numbers of bariatric surgeries in 2019/20.

Altogether there were 80 such surgeries in the region in 2019/20, this is in comparison with 75 the previous year.

The increase came in South Norfolk, which saw 10 more surgeries than the year before, while in North Norfolk it reduced by a third.

The region also saw the number of prescribed items of Orlistat, a drug for treating obesity, fell across the region.

Great Yarmouth and Waveney saw the greatest decline falling to under 1,000 prescribed items, a change of 22pc.

This was followed by Norwich which declined by 15pc and South Norfolk with 10pc, all above the national decline of 5pc.

It equated to between four and eight items per 100,000 people.

A Public Health England spokesperson said “The rise of obesity-related hospital admissions shows why obesity and its associated health risks remain a serious concern.

"We’re working with industry to make food healthier, working with local authorities to create healthier environments, supporting the expansion of weight management services and running public campaigns like Better Health and Change4Life to help families make healthier behaviour changes.”