The latest NHS Health Profile for Wakefield makes grim reading.
Just three of the facts taken from the profile tell us:
- The health of people in Wakefield (particularly East Wakefield) is generally worse than the England average;
- Deprivation is higher than the national average, and about 13,500 children live in poverty;
- About 18.1 per cent of Year 6 children in our area are classified as obese.
Dr Rajeswaran told a recent Pinderfields conference on tackling obesity: ‘Obesity costs the NHS £5bn a year – set to rise to £50bn by 2050 on current trends.’
Dr Shonibara added: ‘Running or visiting a gym can injure obese patients, so we have developed… swimming pool activities.’
Wakefield Council is now responsible for the ‘health and well-being’ of our community.
So how can our councillors face up to their critical responsibility in the face of the savage cuts imposed on Labour councils in the north by (role model) Eric Pickles and his friends down south?
At the end of March budget cuts led the council to close down the Connect3 Service and the Children and Young People’s Weight Management Programme.
Now our councillors are discussing whether to drastically reduce opportunities for all of us in the Five Towns to swim for safety, health and leisure by closing down three accessible pools.
This flies in the face of all common sense!
With a general election in 11 months’ time, there must be a way round!