The World Obesity Federation (WOF) recently hosted its second online SCOPE (Strategic Centre for Obesity Professional Education) School Global in conjunction with the 2nd UAE Obesity Conference addressing the theme of ‘Obesity Across the Lifespan’ from October 22nd-24th 2020. It involved an exceptional line up of speakers from the UAE, GCC, UK and USA including Dr Donna Ryan (Past-President of the World Obesity Federation) and Professor Caroline Apovian (Director, Nutrition and Weight Management Center, Boston Medical Center and Professor of Medicine and Paediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine).
The expert speakers provided key insights on the role of physical activity and appetite regulation in prevention efforts.
Attendees (who were healthcare professionals) were provided with the opportunity to develop a greater understanding of the aetiology and risk factors for obesity, including the current prevalence globally and the association between obesity and its comorbidities (cancer, diabetes, NASH) and the link between COVID-19 and obesity. Additionally, the expert speakers provided key insights on the role of physical activity and appetite regulation in prevention efforts, the complications for patients living with obesity and means of managing the disease. The overall aim of this 3-day school was to equip a healthcare professional (HCP) audience with the knowledge and skills to manage patients presenting with obesity more effectively and to conduct comprehensive initial assessments.
The lack of training for HCPs in obesity management and its knock-on impact on people living with obesity and society were clearly described. This further emphasises the pivotal need for HCP training opportunities globally.
The necessity for HCPs to recognise and treat obesity as a disease was another strongly communicated message and signifies the crucial support and efforts needed by HCPS with wider societal impact to end stigmatisation.
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