Minister welcomes appointment of new clinical lead for obesity

Leading obesity expert Donal O'Shea has been appointed to the role by the HSE

Minister welcomes appointment of new clinical lead for obesity

Professor Donal O'Shea. Photo Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

The Health Minister has welcomed the HSE's appointment of Professor Donal O'Shea as a national clinical lead for obesity.

Prof O'Shea is a consultant endocrinologist and has previously served as chair of the Royal College of Physician's policy group on obesity.

The HSE says Prof O'Shea will work to "strengthen our capacity to prevent and intervene early to halt the progression of overweight and obesity across our population".

Minister Simon Harris described the new clinical lead as a "passionate advocate" in the area of obesity.

Minister Harris suggested: "Professor O'Shea's appointment will strengthen clinical leadership within the health service across prevention, early intervention and treatment of overweight and obesity. I very much look forward to working with him in his new role." 

Commenting on his new role, Prof O'Shea yesterday said there is a commitment in the health service to tackle the problem 'at every stage in the cycle' - from prevention through to management of obesity.

He warned: "There is no magic bullet for the challenge posed by obesity.

"Somehow we have to get this whole of government, whole of industry and whole of society approach to come alive – and take obesity on".

The appointment comes as a new survey warns that two in three Irish adults are not getting enough physical activity.