BANGKOK – The Department of Health plans to extend its physical health campaign to thousands of schools nationwide, to combat rising amount of obesity in school children.
Health expert Chaiporn Promsingh said that the physical health campaign for young students was meant to combat obesity as the number of fat children had increased from 12.5 to 13.1 percent in the last year, according to the Policy and Strategy Bureau of the Ministry of Public Health.
He said the Department of Health has looked to promote the youths’ physical health in the wake of a reduction in classroom hours.
The department also came up with a training scheme for practitioners in public health and medicine as well as education sector and students so they could become activity leaders and encourage overweight children in 13 schools in six provinces to exercise.
The department’s campaign has been extended to 230 nearby schools and is yet to reach out to another 770,000 students at about 7,700 schools in another 30 provinces.
Childhood obesity in Thailand, cost the government as much as 5.5 billion baht a year. According to the Department of Health, poor diet and lack of exercise lead to children developing obesity.