Magazine article Public Finance

PAC Slams Child Obesity 'Dithering'

Magazine article Public Finance

PAC Slams Child Obesity 'Dithering'

Article excerpt

Government attempts to tackle child obesity have involved much 'dithering and confusion' and 'little co-ordination', the Commons Public Accounts Committee has found.

Obesity poses 'serious health risks' and the cost to the NHS is £3.3bn a year and rising. Yet government departments have failed to communicate their messages to parents and children and do not know how they are progressing against their target to halt the increase in obesity of children under 11 by 2010.

Committee chair Edward Leigh said: 'A campaign aimed at parents, children and teachers is supposed to be launched this year, some three years after the target was set. When it finally appears, it must bring home to all the risks of being obese, and show that obese children can make small changes to their behaviour which help them lose weight.'

In its report Tackling child obesity -first steps, published on January 25, the PAC found a lack of communication between Whitehall departments and other agencies over the correct strategy. …

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