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Health call weight & wellbeing programme

In County Durham and Darlington 70% of the population is overweight and we've introduced an innovative programme to help some of those people, using a combination of support from experts and a digital self-management system.

We've recognised that for some people the usual slimming club approach simply doesn't work and ultimately some of them have no alternative but surgery.  Now though, their GP can refer them to this new service.  Each week, on a day and at a time they select themselves, patients receive either an automated email or phone call - again, the choice is theirs.

This asks them to key in their weight and information about eating and physical activity over the last seven days.  Before taking part in the programme, patients attend a seminar to find out how it works and to agree a set of objectives for themselves.  Each week, the automated system also gives them the option to seek support which comes initially in the form of a call back from a specialist nurse, usually within a couple of days.

We're using the software involved to support patients with a range of conditions and he self-monitoring aspect is having benefits that staff didn't appreciate.  Because patients are to a large extend monitoring themselves, they seem to be much more invested in it.  The fact that it's private - ie no standing on the scales in a busy church hall, also seems to suits some people, as does the choice of when to receive the call or email.  Most slimming clubs meet in the evening but this doesn't work for everyone. 

Tyne Tees news featured Health Call Weight & Wellbeing on Monday 10 October 2016.


'As I was very, very nervous, I must have been the worst patient ever and they were brilliant with me and I can't thank them enough - could you please pass on my sincere thanks.'

Patient, Hysteroscopy Unit, Chester-le-Street Community Hospital