Healthier You - at work in Lambeth
Dr Neel Basudev from Springfield Medical Centre, the CCG's diabetes lead and Clinical Drector a Health Innovation Network, The South London Academic Health Science Network reports on local progress with the national diabetes programme Healthier You.
Healthier You aims to reduce the five million people in England at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes prevention is not new and there is strong evidence from multiple studies across the world that behavior and lifestyle interventions can reduce the risk of developing diabetes by up to 58%. We should do as much as we can to promote this message amongst those at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
One south London patient attending the Healthier You programme said:
"I really look forward to the programme – it's local, the coach is very friendly and helpful, and the materials we are given are very easy to use and understand.
"But my favourite thing is seeing what my weight is – I've lost seven kilos so far, which I'm really happy about.
"Healthier You has definitely helped me to change my lifestyle on a long-term basis. It opens up a lot of things, like when you go shopping, you learn to actually look at the nutritional information on food labels – something I never did before.
"It's been a real eye-opener. The coaches aren't telling you what to do – it's your choice. They're giving you an alternative and demonstrating what the results can be, and I'm seeing those results.
"They're not massive changes, just normal, small things that really add up and make a difference."
In Lambeth Healthier You open its doors for referrals in September 2016. So far there have been over 360 referrals from 41 practices. But around 10,500 people are eligible for the intervention in Lambeth so there is obviously still a long way to go. Referral activity varies from practice to practice. There's a practice that has referred 36 people but many have only referred one.
Across our South London partnership, there have been over 3,500 referrals that have led to more than 650 people currently booked onto programmes. Twenty eight percent of referrals have come from the two lowest deciles of deprivation and 45% are from BAME groups. The programme seems to be making some impact on those most in need of help.