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2020-07-23 - 06:22:35  POLITICS | 

Government must launch a war on obesity Says Pat Gordon-Pamplin


Given the experiences of some other jurisdictions and recommendations emanating from them, Government should strongly consider starting a comprehensive health education campaign aimed at those most at risk from Covid-19 in case there is a second wave of infections.

Bermuda has a high level of obesity and type 2 diabetes and it is thought people with that condition could be at greater risk from Covid-19, so now is the time to launch a campaign to help people lose weight and have healthier lifestyles.

Premier David Burt was quoted as saying that Government would ‘ensure that we earmark all of the funds that are generated from the sugar tax to the promotion of healthy living initiatives’. That has not happened, but we need to see investment in an intensive public health education exercise and the funds can come from the sugar tax.

Bermuda was fortunate in that most of the Covid-19 cases were in clusters, in places like rest homes, and there was no community transmission. However, we cannot be certain that will be the case if there is a second wave and we must take preventative measures now.

Government made Covid-19 testing available in different parts of the Island. It had pop-up testing places and it had a huge information campaign to get key messages home to the public.

We know, therefore, that this kind of campaign can be done. It needs to be done.
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