THE former editor of The Telegraph has received backlash online after saying "so many NHS staff are overweight".

Charles Moore took aim at nurses in his column after the Westminster launched its obesity strategy in a bid to get the country’s health back in check.

Writing in The Telegraph yesterday, Matt Hancock urged overweight people in the UK to lose five pounds to save the NHS more than £100 million.

But Moore said healthcare workers are to blame, adding: “Shortly after reading Matt Hancock’s article about combatting obesity in yesterday’s paper, I emerged from a café to find my way virtually blocked by an enormously wide, youngish woman in a nurse’s uniform.

“It was a vivid reminder of a general fact about the National Health Service: many of its staff are fat.”

Moore, who is Boris Johnson’s former editor, compared overweight nurses to the days when many doctors smoked.

“If the public are being urged to lose weight, they will not take the message seriously if they notice that a substantial proportion of those caring for them are not doing so,” he continued.

“Sightings of fat NHS doctors are definitely unusual these days. Nurses and ancillary staff, on the other hand, are often disproportionately tubby.”

The article was widely criticised on social media.

Louise Kennedy said: "I hope Charles Moore doesn’t need the care and attention of my amazing NHS nursing colleagues anytime soon."

Michael Bradley and Steve Brookstein pointed out nurses work long shifts which may affect their ability to look after their health.


Others questioned why a national newspaper ran such a column.