Strategic Council

APPG on Obesity Announces New Strategic Council

A group of leading experts met yesterday in Parliament to find new solutions to obesity in the UK.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Obesity has set up a strategic council, which held its inaugural meeting yesterday, to give advice on how to improve the prevention and treatment of obesity. The council is made up of leading academics, clinicians, policy-makers and patient representatives, to offer advice on how to reverse the UK’s rising obesity rates and to delegate voluntary task and finish groups to take practical steps to reduce obesity.

Obesity is one of the greatest health problems facing the UK, with over 60% of adults in England classed as overweight or living with obesity. Similarly, childhood obesity rates are also on the rise – 34% of children aged 10-11 years have a weight status classified as overweight or obese. In 2018, the rate of severe obesity amongst year 6 children reached its highest level ever.

If current trends continue, obesity will continue to pose an increasing risk to public health. Obesity is associated with significant health problems such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer and causes significant cost to the NHS. It is estimated that the NHS spent £6.1 billion on overweight and obesity-related ill-health in 2014 to 2015 and the overall cost of obesity to wider society is estimated at £27 billion.

The council will create a forum to discuss the joining up of obesity prevention and treatment and how to reduce the impact of obesity on the lives of those living in the UK.

Co-chair of the APPG on Obesity, Andrew Selous MP, said:

“This council will help the APPG go from strength to strength. The APPG has been calling for improved prevention through a 9pm watershed on advertising of food and drinks high in fat, sugar and salt and we are pleased that the Government has consulted on this. The strategic council’s knowledge and experience will help the APPG to push for even more progress.”

Co-chair Eleanor Smith MP said:

“The Strategic Council will provide a constant source of expert advice as we try to develop policy that will help people to stay healthy as well as ensuring everyone has the access to the services they require. Not only will this improve the quality of life of patients living with obesity, but given the wider cost of obesity to public spending, it will also ease the financial burden on the NHS.”

We are delighted to announce the the members of the Strategic Council are as follows:

  • Professor Paul Gately, Professor of Exercise and Obesity, Leeds Beckett University

    • Paul has significant experience in the design, development and evaluation of obesity intervention programmes for children and adults both within the UK and internationally. He has worked with a variety of stakeholders from Government, NGO and the commercial sector.

  • Patrick McGinley, Head of Costing and SLR, Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust

    • Patrick is a very experienced cost and management accountant and manager within NHS.

  • Susannah Howard, STP Programme Director, Suffolk & North East Essex STP

    • Susannah Howard has a depth of knowledge of contemporary health and care policy as part of leadership team of one of the first and most successful Integrated Care Systems.

  • Professor Harry Rutter, Professor of Global Public Health, Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath

    • Harry has a public health academic and practitioner with extensive expertise in obesity including: Leading the establishment of the National Child Measurement Programme, setting up and was director of the National Obesity Observatory, sat on the management group of 2007 Foresight ‘Tackling Obesities’ project

  • Sarah Le Brocq, Director, Obesity UK

    • As a person living with obesity, Sarah brings the lived experience, but also brings her experience of being Director of Obesity UK and her experience of working with the NHS for over 15 years.

  • Chris McEwan, Deputy Mayor of Darlington, Darlington Borough Council

    • Chris’ expertise lies in both an understanding of NHS Commissioning and Local Government. He was Deputy leader of Darlington Council. Additionally, he works as an LGA Peer specialising in Prevention Matters workshops, along with undertaking Whole System Health and Social Care Reviews, alongside working with development of Health and Wellbeing Board Chairs.

  • Shaw Somers, Specialist Upper Gastrointestinal and Bariatric Surgeon, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust

    • Shaw has 25 years of experience in managing patients with complex obesity problems, and extensive experience in setting up NHS services for complex obesity in three NHS Trusts.

  • Dr Rishi Caleyachetty, Assistant Professor, Warwick Medical School

    • Rishi is a junior doctor and epidemiologist, taking care of both patients and communities living with obesity and obesity-related complications.

  • Dr. Abd A Tahrani, NIHR Clinician Scientist, University of Birmingham

    • Abd is an Endocrinologist and also a person living with obesity. He is a senior clinician and senior academic in the field of the pathogenesis and management of obesity and its complication.

  • Professor James Kingsland OBE, President, National Association of Primary Care

    • James is a UK General Practitioner of considerable experience and talent who throughout his career has consistently been elected by his peers into leadership positions, both locally and nationally. He is unique as a practicing clinician, who is also a broadcaster, writer, presenter, speaker and educator.

  • Dr Adrian Brown, NIHR Lecturer/Research Fellow in Nutrition & Dietetics, Imperial College London

    • Adrian’s expertise focuses on the nutritional and behavioural management of people with obesity and type 2 diabetes. In particular, using formula low energy diets in patients with type 2 diabetes, obesity & other co-morbidities.

  • Flora Nicholson, Executive Director, Obesity Empowerment Network

    • Flora’s work with the Obesity Empowerment Network has enabled her to develop an in-depth expertise of the key issues faced by people affected by obesity in the UK, in particular access to treatment, prevention and stigma.

  • Dr Emma Frew, Professor in Health Economics, University of Birmingham

    • Emma is an internationally recognised health economist with expertise in the economics of obesity. As well as her technical academic expertise, she brings vast amounts of applied experience working with local and national policy-makers.

  • Professor John Wass, Professor of Endocrinology, University of Oxford

    • John brings an experience of the treatment of obesity, experience of the setting up obesity services, and the protagonising of these throughout the country and the interactions of Tiers 1, 2, 3 and 4 of weight management.

  • Caroline Cerny, Alliance Lead, Obesity Health Alliance

    • Caroline brings knowledge and understanding of the policy position and activity being undertaken by the broad range of NGOs and stakeholders working in obesity in the UK.

  • Nadya Isack, Patient Representative, Obesity Empowerment Network

    • Nadya’s expertise lies in the fact that she am not the “usual” known person advising and/or commenting about issues regarding Obesity.

The inaugural meeting of the Strategic Council was held on Tuesday 23rd July 2019 in the Houses of Parliament.

Contact us: If you have any questions about the Strategic Council and the work it is currently undertaking, please email or call 020 7735 6963

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