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The big question: should the NHS provide dietary advice to staff?


The Royal College of Physicians has claimed that too many nurses are seriously overweight and setting a bad example to the people they are trying to treat.

The college has said that the health service’s response to the obesity problem is “patchy” and there should be targets to reduce staff obesity.

How can the NHS tackle the issue of obesity? Do overweight nurses set a bad example to patients? What do you think?

Your comments could be published in the magazine.


Readers' comments (8)

  • I don't think seeing fat nurses standing on a perimeter pathway smoking, and drinking coffee; sets a particularly good example. But, they are a reflection of a section of society. Many of us (nurses) do not smoke, or eat crap. We exercise, and are generally aware of the health benefits of keeping fit. The problem is the whole profession is being bashed again, this is just another club to beat us with. People or patients usually make up their own minds, whether they will change their lifestyles or not. Like alcoholics, they have to arrive at a point in their lives where they decide they have had enough. From my experience hospitals can only help if the individual has decided to clean up their act. That's where we can be of benefit, helping those who wish to help themselves. Yes, we have fat nurses, some of whom smoke even, so what!

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  • Tinkerbell

    Anonymous | 3-Jan-2013 1:36 pm

    Well said. So long as they are not taking sick leave because of obesity/alcoholism/ smoking/ anorexia/OCD etc., and are still trying to be productive, helpful members of society, leave nurses alone and give us a break.

    Have all you's MP's finished fiddling your expenses yet. I hope so, otherwise your glass houses are at risk.

    Yeah by all means provide us with whatever information on healthy eating and then provide us with a decent break on a 7 1/2 hr shift or longer so we can eat it.

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  • We as professionals are role models and as such the image we project reflects our level of professionalism. Overweight , smoking and a lethargic attitude to our profession is counter productive to any positive change in the perception of our role as nurses.

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  • Healthcare professionals should set an example:
    if you are fatter than the nurse who is looking after you = get thinner

    if you are drinking more than your GP = drink less

    if you are taking better recreational drugs than both = share

    if your health carer is actually sicker than you are but has still turned up for work = get a grip.

    if you are

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  • this critical appraisal can be applied to...
    police - any caught speeding
    teachers - any caught reading The Sun
    priests - any caught doing anything ungodly
    bank clerks - any going overdrawn
    politicans - any caught gold plating their cat litter trays etc etc
    they will all be just as helpful

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  • Anonymous | 7-Jan-2013 11:15 am

    of course it must. anybody representing their profession should be a good example otherwise they should not be doing the job or in public service.

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  • Presumably the Royal College of Physicians has made equally appropriate comment on the obesity status of its members, not just the nurses?

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  • no fat doctors out there of course, paragons of virtue.

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