National Social Marketing Centre

British back lifestyle change to ease health service burden

Thursday, December 9, 2010 - 02:00

Britons back government intervention to encourage healthy behaviour, a study by Ipsos MORI has found.

National Health? Citizens' views of health services around the world, explores people's perceptions of their healthcare services globally. It finds that most of us support addressing financial pressures on the healthcare system through measures like lifestyle change.

We also believe that governments have a role to play in encouraging healthier lifestyles. The percentage is highest in Singapore at 85 per cent; in Hong Kong, the figure is 72 per cent.

Although a majority of Britons are supportive, at 57 per cent we are nonetheless among the least keen, alongside Canada and above only Japan and Germany. So policymakers do not have carte blanche – they should not be too heavy-handed in their approach. They must ensure that they bring people with them when addressing public health challenges.

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