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Letter: Anti-obesity drugs

Tuesday 15 August 2023 | Written by Supplied | Published in Letters to the Editor, Opinion


Letter: Anti-obesity drugs

As my last effort to generate some awareness and discussion, a later article in Nature says that “a weekly dose of Wegovy (aka semaglutide) slashed the risk of severe cardiovascular events by 20 per cent in adults with heart disease and either overweight or obesity.

... The results also suggest that the new generation of anti-obesity drugs can profoundly improve health, not just reduce weight”.

So you can imagine how sorry I am to see that a possible medication is dismissed without further consideration by our Ministry of Health when the TMO’s own May 2023 Quarterly Report on NCDs says that “Cardiovascular diseases is the leading cause of NCD related deaths in the Cook Islands”.

I wanted to suggest to conference organisers of the Cook Islands Health Conference that perhaps they could raise this relevant matter for discussion, given our worsening statistics.

Read more:

> TMO responds to anti-obesity drug proposal

> Letter: Obesity  

To my disappointment, I found the name has changed from the Cook Islands Health Conference to Pasifika Health Conference, with full registration fee of NZ$750 including associated Charity Ball and Cocktail Party at $100 each. I consider these social events frivolous and would have opted out, but in any case, registrations have closed. It appears that gone are the days when a Cook Islands researcher could present their findings to a local audience. Instead, it looks like the conference has become a form of “medical tourism” which allows Pasifika medical researchers to write off their winter holiday against taxes.

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

(Name and address supplied)