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The state of our children’s health in Warwickshire

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Young people in Warwickshire are less likely to be obese than others in Britain – but more likely to be admit-ted to hospital having self-harmed.

Those are among the finding of a national study published last week into children’s health, which presents a generally positive picture of our

county.

For example, 8.1 per cent of children aged four or five and 16.1 per cent of those aged ten or 11 are classed as obese – less than the national average.

Other figures are similarly positive.

Compared with the England average, a higher pro-portion of children - 97.1 per cent - have received their first dose of immunisation by the age of two in Warwickshire.

By the age of five, 94.1 per cent of children have received their second dose of Measles, mumps and rubella immunisation. This is higher than the regional and England average.

In 2011, 31 girls aged under 18 conceived for every 1,000 females aged 15-17 years in Warwickshire – lower than the regional average and similar

to the England average.

But there were areas where Warwickshire performed less well. Some 45.1 per cent of mothers are still breast-feeding at six to eight weeks, which is lower than the England average.

In addition, 17.6 per cent of mothers are still smoking at the time of giving birth, above the England aver-age of 12.7 per cent.

The number of children aged four and under attending accident and emergency is above the England average.

And the number of hospital admissions for ten to 24-year-olds as a result of self-harm is above the England average.

Cllr Bob Stevens, the county councillor responsible for public health policy said: “It’s simply not acceptable that about one in five pregnant women in Warwickshire are still smoking at the point of delivery.”

Professor Kevin Fenton, from Public Health England, which published the report, said: “There are simple things we can all do every day with our kids that are likely to support children’s wellbeing – walking to school with them (and talking to them on the way), making sure they get a healthy breakfast, making sure they are active for the recommended 60 minutes per day and switching some of that screen time into physical activity.”

 

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