Hospitals Spend Big on Plus-Size Equipment as Obesity Rates Rise

British hospitals are spending millions to adapt to allow them to treat obese patients, including buying equipment to cool bodies that will not fit into mortuary friges, a report said Monday.

The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported that hospitals have spent at least £5.5 million pounds over the last three years making alterations such as widening corridors, buying reinforced beds and installing lifting equipment.

The newspaper collated data from hospitals in England and Wales.

About a quarter of British adults and one in every five children aged 10 to 11 are estimated to be obese, a classification usually defined by a Body Mass Index (BMI) of above 30.

The NHS already spends more than 4 billion pounds a year tackling obesity and related diseases.

"These worrying figures are indicative of the extent of the problem of obesity in England. Given that the number of obese people is on the rise, this situation is likely to get worse," the Telegraph quoted Tam Fry of the National Obesity Forum as saying.

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