22 Oct 2019

Obesity challenging NZ's aged care sector

From Nine To Noon, 9:35 am on 22 October 2019
Photo of young carer helping the elderly woman

Photo: 123RF

A new VUW School of Nursing report into aged residential care facilities has found them ill equipped to accommodate the increasing number of New Zealanders who need bariatric specific care, due to extreme obesity. It's calling on the Ministry of Health to urgently develop comprehensive standards for bariatric care within acute and community settings, as well as to review national standards, improve equipment and implement safe staffing ratios.

Dr Caz Hales says the implications of not addressing these concerns include increasing the financial burden on the aged care sector, longer acute hospital stays, and further stigmatisation of people with obesity. Dr Hales is presenting her research at the NZACA Conference in Wellington 22-24 October.

Kathryn Ryan is joined by Dr Caz Hales and her colleague Dr Helen Rook who is also a lecturer at the VUW School of Nursing.