A Healthy Weight for Ireland’, the Government’s Obesity Policy and Action Plan (OPAP), was launched in September 2016 under the auspices of the Healthy Ireland agenda.
The OPAP covers a ten year period up to 2025 and aims to reverse obesity trends, prevent health complications and reduce the overall burden for individuals, families, the health system, and the wider society and economy. Indeed it must be emphasised that every sector of our society has a role in reducing the burden of obesity and the OPAP clearly acknowledges this.
The OPAP policy prescribed 'Ten Steps Forward' that would be taken to prevent overweight and obesity. A new Obesity Policy Implementation Oversight Group (OPIOG) was established in October 2017 and a progress report on each recommendation in the OPAP is currently being finalised under the aegis of the OPIOG. It is expected that this progress report will be published in the coming weeks.
In relation to the annual bulletin or scorecard to evaluate the progress made with implementing the OPAP, my Department has requested the Health Research Board Centre for Diet and Research at University College Cork to develop a framework for this. It is expected that this framework will be finalised before the summer, which will then allow for a qualitative and robust assessment of progress with implementing the OPAP to be compiled and published later in the year, and on an annual basis thereafter.