THE number of admissions to Royal Bournemouth Hospital where obesity is a factor have rocketed by 168 per cent.

New figures released by NHS Digital show that in 2013-2014 there were 852 admissions of this nature per 100,00 in Bournemouth. By 2016-2017 that number had risen to 2,281 – up more than one and a half times.

In Poole 924 people per 100,000 were admitted in 2013-14, rising to 1,586 in 2016-2017. The hospital also saw a rise in admissions directly caused by obesity, from seven in 2013/14 to 17 in 2016/17.

The Dorset area saw its figures rise from 757 in 2013-2014 to 1,187 up by 433 people – more than one a day.

Operations for obesity – bariatric surgery – rose by a third in Bournemouth during the time frame, from six per 100,000 to eight. Poole has seen its numbers of bariatric patients rise from seven per 100,000 to 11. This is slightly lower than the English national average of 13 per 100,000.

The statistics come on top of news released last week that more than half of adults living in Dorset – and these figures exclude Bournemouth and Poole - are overweight or obese.

According to Dorset County Council 59 per cent of adults are too fat, as are 28 per cent – more than a quarter – of Year 6 children.

Astonishingly, the figures are BETTER than the national average but, says the county, they remain a ‘great concern’ due to the life-threatening conditions they can lead to which can impact on the economy and people’s welfare.

Sam Crowe, Deputy Director for Public Health Dorset said: “There is a range of work happening nationally to combat what’s been described as the obesity epidemic, such as policies on better food labelling, the sugar tax and encouraging people to be more active.

“Public Health Dorset is working to reduce levels of obesity and inactivity through LiveWell Dorset; the county’s single point of access health and well-being service.”

He said LiveWell Dorset supports people to take control of their health and wellbeing, offering behavioural support and linking people to opportunities in their local communities.

“The website contains innovative tools ready to support and guide sustained lifestyle change, including the Activity Finder and Habit Hacker,” he said. “More features will be released in the coming weeks with the focus on delivering personalised, long-term behavioural change support.”

He invited readers to find out more on 0800 840 1628 or visiting the website at