European and International virtual congress

The European and International virtual congress on obesity (ECOICO2020) emphasised the importance and the necessity of providing adequate training to healthcare professionals on obesity to its 3000+ delegates. Members of the RCSI Sláintecare team presented research and chaired sessions throughout the 4-day congress from the 1st-4th September 2020. The patient’s voice was crucial in raising the issue of weight bias and stigma that exists in healthcare settings.

Research highlighted that there are low levels of healthcare professional training in obesity care. Additionally, lack of healthcare professional training was ranked 2nd globally as a perceived barrier to adequate obesity treatment across 68 countries. Speakers also provided suggestions for training in obesity care. Ideally, training should be inter-disciplinary, encourage continuous and integrated learning and be available online and evaluated. Another suggestion provided was to develop or adapt existing e-learning training packages to be culturally and locally relevant. RCSI with Sláintecare facilitated inter-professional training at ECOICO2020 and are currently developing an e-training course in childhood obesity for healthcare professionals in Ireland.