More pharmacies should do NHS Health Checks to improve access, a new study that focuses on ways to improve the lives of people living with obesity, recommends.
The report, Levelling Up Obesity Care, by pharma giant Novo Nordisk follows a series of roundtables with patient advocates, healthcare professionals and academics to generate understanding on the future of obesity care in England.
Amongst its recommendations, the report says that ‘to widen access and alleviate pressure on GP services, consideration should be given to expanding NHS Health Checks in community pharmacy’.
NHS Health Checks include a measurement of Body Mass Index (BMI).
Those most likely to benefit from a Health Check include people who live in more deprived areas, and are more likely to be living with obesity, says the report.
Sanjeev Panesar, a National Pharmacy Association board member who advised the report’s authors, said: “The benefits of losing weight can be profound for mental and physical wellbeing. As pharmacists, we are frequently asked for advice about medicines to support weight loss, and we can also help people on their journey to a healthier lifestyle, which is vital for maintaining a healthy weight.
“This report is a reminder of the scale of the obesity challenge, which has become even more pressing due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Having participated in the development of this report, the NPA is pleased to see it recommend the expansion of NHS Health Checks in community pharmacies.”