tutor2u | UK Issues: Health Care

Enrichment

UK Issues: Health Care

Mike McCartney

5th January 2022

Why don't we talk about these more? Subject for a Politics Society talk?

I'm trying to promote a new Politics Society as an idea. So looking at topics that go beyond the narrow confines of the British Politics element of the A Level syllabus.

Years ago, I used to teach and examine the UK Political Issues strand of the Edexcel course. Now sadly demised. Why a shame? The content included areas such as crime and policy. Did the British prison system work. Was (is?) the UK police force racist? So it sparked a great more debate than the pros and cons of the Congressional legislative system.

Anyway, this news story caught my attention, and made we wonder if we might want to ask as Politics students what the point is of what we are studying if it is not to make the life of those that govern us to make our lives better?

Here is the story:

"Ministers have been warned that their efforts to tackle Britain’s obesity crisis are likely to fail because the public are constantly “bombarded” by unhealthy food options.

Britain has one of the highest obesity rates in Europe, with two in three adults overweight or obese and the NHS spending £6bn a year treating obesity-related ill-health, a figure that is forecast to rise to £10bn a year by 2050. The government has announced plans to introduce a 9pm watershed on TV and a ban on paid-for advertising online for unhealthy food and drink, plus new restrictions on the promotion of unhealthy food and drink in retail outlets and online.

However, a damning 28-page report, commissioned by the government’s own obesity research unit and seen by the Guardian, warns that these efforts will fail unless much wider action is urgently taken to transform the entire food environment."

Read more here: UK obesity plan will fail without action on unhealthy food – report | Obesity | The Guardian

Questions

Explain the significance of obesity in the UK

Outline what the government’s most recent obesity strategy entails

Which organisation has criticised the proposals? Summarise their main concerns.

Consider whether you agree with the government’s plans or consider them to be either unnecessary, or not sufficient?

Mike McCartney

Mike is an experienced A-Level Politics teacher, author and examiner.

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