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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 59-67

Prevention and control of obesity: An interprofessional system approach


Department of Surgery and College of Medicine, King Saud University, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Mohammed Y Alnaami
Head, Upper Gastrointestinal Tract Surgery Unit, Department of Surgery and College of Medicine, King Saud University, PO Box 2454, Riyadh - 11451
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2347-2618.197700

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Obesity is an escalating global epidemic with exponential increasing rates in Saudi Arabia and Gulf Countries. Obesity has adverse effects on patients’ health, psychology, and socioeconomic status. In addition, it is a burden on societies when obese individuals become less productive in their work and governments spend more money for their accommodation in the society and health care expenditure. A comprehensive interprofessional system approach inclusive of broad environmental and social interventions and individuals’ psychological and behavioral changes is required to produce positive impact on obesity prevention and control in societies. The aim of this project is to involve concerned health care and non-health professions, policy makers, and other stakeholders to work together within a system framework. The idea of this project was initiated at the first residential meeting of the Manipal University – Foundation for the Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER, Philadelphia, USA) International Institute for Leadership in Interprofessional Education (MUFIILIPE) Fellowship Program, Manipal, India, in May 2015. The literature collected and carefully selected includes major reports, policies, guidelines, and interventions done at several sectorial levels; best-evidence practices on communities, health care professions, schools, and workplaces; implementation strategies, success stories, and barriers; and studies on assessment of the effectiveness and impact of these interventions. Out of hundreds of articles and reports in obesity and related NCDs published nationally and worldwide, this project documents and discusses local interventions and programs in this field with lessons learned. In addition, best-evidence practices/interventions, and policies that have worked globally to prevent and manage obesity are discussed and extrapolated to our local settings. Aided by national and international expert groups, this project tries to document a road map for a multisectorial interprofessional system approach to prevent and control obesity in the region to influence its impact on individuals and society.


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