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Health survey: Numbers of overweight adults 'particularly concerning' says BMA

The British Medical Association in Wales has responded to today's health survey saying the number of overweight and obese people in Wales is 'concerning'.

Credit: PA

Dr Charlotte Jones, Chair of the BMA’s Welsh General Practitioners Committee says whilst it is 'pleasing' the percentage of adults smoking in Wales is at a record low, the rising levels of obesity could have a detrimental impact on the health service.

Dr Jones says tackling the problem should begin with children and preventing them from becoming overweight in the first place.

“If current trends continue, the cost to the health service is likely to increase unless measures are put in place to halt this growing problem.

“We need to start with children, to prevent children from becoming overweight in the first place and to equip them with good habits for the future. This includes maintaining a healthy diet, and exercising regularly. Parents, schools, health professionals, the media, food manufacturers and the government all have an important role to play in reducing the risk to children’s lives from obesity.

“Unfortunately, it is no surprise that adults in the least deprived areas were less likely to smoke, more likely to meet physical activity guidelines and less likely to be overweight or obese than those in the most deprived areas.

“Doctors are all too aware of the impact of social and economic inequalities on their patients, seeing this as they do on a daily basis. We are looking forward to working with the new Minister for Social Services and Public Health to explore what further steps can be taken to narrow health inequalities in Wales and improve the health of the nation.”

– Dr Charlotte Jones, BMA Cymru


Welsh ambulance non-emergency transport services impacted by power cut

Welsh Ambulance's non-emergency transport services are being affected by a power cut.

The Welsh Ambulance Service has also reported that their ability to receive 999 calls has been affected.

More children in Wales controlling diabetes

Paediatric diabetes experts say years of interventions are finally being realised as children with diabetes in Wales are achieving excellent control of the disease.

Credit: PA

The report by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) shows that, overall children and young people with diabetes are achieving better control which is reducing their lifetime risk of diabetes-associated complications such as kidney disease, blindness and amputations.

However, the report also found that just a quarter of 12-year-olds have all seven recommended health care checks performed.

These health checks are important, they form part of a lifetime of screening for complications which, if recognised early are amenable to interventions that reduce progression.

In addition, worryingly high numbers of children over the age of 12 are already showing signs of early complications – something last year’s report also flagged. It is extremely rewarding for doctors and patients to see positive results starting to emerge after the time they have spent trying to improve diabetes care for children.

However, we will not rest on our laurels as the variability in outcomes seen across the two nations remains excessive and ongoing improvements are still required.

– Dr Justin Warner, Clinical Lead for the National Paediatric Diabetes Audit

In response to the report the Welsh Government says it's encouraging to see improvements in paediatric diabetes care here in Wales.

They say the Children and Young People’s Diabetes Network is also working closely with the Diabetes Implementation Group and local health boards to make further improvements.


71% of ambulances reached 'most urgent' calls within eight minutes in March

The Welsh Ambulance Service says ambulance response times exceeded targets in March.

71.% of emergency responses to 'red' calls arrived within 8 minutes, above the target of 65%.

A spokesperson said performance ranged from 56.1% in Powys to 80.3% in Cardiff & Vale.

  • There were 35,450 emergency calls, an average of 1,182 per day, 9.8% down on the daily average for March 2016.
  • Of the total, 1,609 (4.5%) were classed as red, 21,858 (61.7%) were amber and 11,983 (33.8%) were green.

Campaigner who fought for cancer drugs dies

The prominent cancer campaigner Annie Mulholland has died.

The 62-year-old from Cardiff had been living with ovarian cancer.

After going so far as to rent a London flat to gain access to drugs not available in Wales, she became well-known for lobbying the Welsh Government for fairer funding and access to cancer drugs.

New service to support children and teenagers affected by cancer

A new service has been launched across South Wales aimed at supporting children and teenagers when a family member has cancer.

It's being led by Velindre Cancer Centre in Cardiff.

New cancer support service for children Credit: ITV Wales

Living with cancer is difficult for anyone but it can be particularly difficult for children who might struggle to understand their parents illness.

That can often lead to feelings of isolation, anxiety and upset. But a new specialist service is hoping to change all that.

Alexandra Lodge has been finding out more about it.

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