Childhood Obesity More Complex

Childhood obesity is a little more complex than what we are being told, and I want to say thanks to the countless of contacts and volunteers, who have supported Obesity Thunder Bay. We have a food environmental crisis and the time for action, real action, is upon us. At some point and time we need to support mainstream media to get off of the couch potato myth.Currently, we have six month old babies that are overweight. Is this due to too much TV?


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I am calling on others to get involved, and I want to say a big thank you to the many readers.  Thunder Bay, and Northwestern Ontario is my home, and I think we have a community driven action plan and somebody needs to raise awareness on the notion of health prevention.               


Canada’s health care system is worse off than it was ten years ago. This is due to longer wait times, increased demand on services and very little dollars allocated for prevention. Our food system has been altered and fresh produce continues to be beyond the reach of our citizens. Food costs continue rise and some argue that healthy fresh produce is beyond the reach of many low-income Canadians.


Many individuals do not even have a doctor, and northern regions continue to struggle to keep doctors. Adding to the problem includes area hospitals doing less and less for their communities, and thus adding to the demand on services in many hospitals.


Services that use to be offered by area hospitals have been severely cut. These include delivering babies, and because of these cutbacks the demand has increased on centralized hospitals such as the Thunder Bay Regional Hospital. Many citizens in Northern Ontario do not have a doctor, causing prevention to be missed. Patients are facing longer and longer wait times and some have resorted to private health care agencies.


Our public dollars continue to be severely restricted and money for prevention is virtually non-existent. An example of this is the confounding and confusing work plans that funded groups continue to misinform our citizens with, as it relates to the problem. According to many we have an inactivity crisis, and the issue of chronic illnesses continues to get worse. Who is funding the inactivity crisis?


Our health care system in Canada needs to be improved. When Ontario spends 47 cents out of every dollar for health care today, the need for change is far beyond critical. Now is the time for real accountability. The notion of shared accountability just might create the change needed. Perhaps we could create a food system that supports food security by offering food affordability, for all Canadians.


Chronic illnesses such as childhood obesity continue to grow. The economic down turn and more low paying jobs continue to add to the overall problem. Our health care system continues to fail to address preventable and very complex health issues due to a lack of prevention efforts. Our health care system continues to be reactive in nature, and the concept of supporting funding prevention type models continue to be missed.


This lack of vision continues to overburden our health care service providers. Pay now, or pay later.

By Paul Murphy




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