This international meeting discussed the management of physical health in patients with schizophrenia in several countries including France, Spain, Germany, the UK and Italy. Physical health parameters, including weight, blood pressure, blood glucose, lipids and standard biochemical assessments are measured in many patients at the first hospital consultation. These reveal physical disorders such as obesity, hypertension, dyslipidaemia, the metabolic syndrome, substance abuse, cardiovascular disease, extrapyramidal symptoms, sexual dysfunction and diabetes in substantial proportions of patients. Psychiatrists consider switching antipsychotic therapy if excessive sedation, extrapyramidal symptoms, unacceptable weight gain, hyperglycaemia or dyslipidaemia occur. In general, switching is more likely to be considered for symptomatic adverse events than for laboratory abnormalities. Switching is discouraged by limited knowledge of protocols, the absence of guidelines and fears of relapse or reduced treatment adherence. The physical health of patients with schizophrenia receives much less attention in the community setting than in the hospital setting. Improved guidelines, protocols, resources and support are needed to improve the physical health of patients in the community.