Stuart Rowbotham’s Adult Care report to the Communities Scrutiny
Committee was Doctor Anjan Ghosh’s commendably brief Public Health report,
condensed into a nine slide presentation crammed with statistics - and difficult challenges.
The population, he said, is around 250,000 and obesity is a serious problem with about 130,000 Bexley adults overweight. The Adult Weight Management Service has a capacity of only 1,200 a year. Statistically it “has no impact whatsoever”.
Health quality varies enormously across the borough with a huge north south divide.
Dr. Ghosh has three main objectives; reducing health inequality, fulfilling the statutory duties and to embed health within all of Bexley Council’s business. (Slide 5.)
Another problem is dementia, there are around 2,600 cases in Bexley and rising at around 100 cases a year.
About 15,000 people live alone and loneliness is a problem and the proportion of elderly people is rising steeply. (Slide 7.)
The main causes of preventable death are cancer, heart disease and lung disease related to smoking. (Slide 7.)
Bexley is among the worst places in the country for overweight children, teenage smoking, lack of exercise, bowel cancer and late diagnosis of HIV. Thamesmead has the worst HIV figures in London and almost the worst in the country. Flu deaths are among the worst too. (Slide 8.)
Councillor Sue Gower (Conservative, Bexleyheath) asked when the currently developing obesity strategies will be operational. November is the hope and expectation.