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Quantification of disease burden by deaths or years lived with disability is a useful indicator as it informs prevention by accounting for health loss but it does not reflect the needs for health services. An alternative indicator is to quantify the impact of a risk factor on health care utilization. In an article published in BMC Medicine, Reeves and colleagues describe the relationship between body mass index in 1.2 million women (England) and hospital admission rates. The main finding was that around one in eight hospital admissions was attributable to overweight or obesity, translating to around 420,000 extra hospital admissions, and two million extra days spent in hospital, annually. These findings reinforce the evidence that excess body weight is associated with extensive healthcare utilization and emphasize the need to scale-up and speed-up research if global problems, such as obesity, are to be tackled with due alacrity. Please see related research: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7015/12/45. © 2014 Renehan and Buchan; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Renehan, A. G., & Buchan, I. E. (2014, April 17). The impact of excess body weight at the hospital frontline. BMC Medicine. BioMed Central Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1186/1741-7015-12-64