Our diabetes management services offer participants a 4-week or 2-week intensive course on how to better manage their Type 2 diabetes. The courses involve information about healthy diet, increasing physical activity, managing stress and improving wellbeing. Participants are encouraged to set small, achievable goals to make gradual and sustainable changes to their behaviour which will ultimately improve their health.
We provide weekday, evening and weekend courses to suit demand. There are also options for participants to do part of the course online, if prior commitments prevent them from attending every session with follow up telephone calls from staff to check understanding and answer any questions.
In March 2013 we joined forces with Exeter-based charity Westbank Community Health and Care to deliver evaluated pilot programmes in Birmingham and Exeter to people identified as being at risk of developing, or recently diagnosed with, Type 2 diabetes. This involved working with a number of Universities including Exeter, Bristol and Birmingham. Working with the Universities, we have undertaken a Randomised Control Trial (RCT) with the aim of evidencing the value and benefits of the service to participants (service-users).
An independent evaluation of the effectiveness of education for individuals newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes as well as those at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes was conducted by the University of West England:
“The results presented in the current study suggest that participants who maintain contact and engagement with the LWTC programme are likely to achieve significant reductions in weight and other outcomes linked to reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes or improved management of Type 2 diabetes.”
The programme is a cost effective solution to reducing the incidence of Type 2 diabetes and associated conditions and risk factors. Participants report feeling involved in the programme and that the peer support of the group interaction helps and supports them to change health risk behaviour and also maintain sustained support. A downloadable copy of the evaluation is available here.
The development phase of our programme has helped to inform the evidence base underpinning the new Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme. We have formalised our partnership with Westbank, setting up a new company called Living Well Taking Control which has been selected as one of four national providers to deliver the Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme across England.
How do clients find the courses?
“The Facilitator is fantastic, very kind and very helpful. I followed the advise that the Facilitator delivered on the programme and I have lost 2 stone in weight and my HbA1c reading has gone from 44 mmol/mol to 37 mmol/mol. I would never have made the changes to my lifestyle without the Facilitator’s help.”
“The programme was brilliant and the Facilitator was very caring and very helpful. She made us feel comfortable and always allowed time for us to ask questions. I did not understand food labels and she explained this very well and now I look at labels when I am buying food. I have completely changed my eating habits and it is all down to the Facilitator. She continues to keep me on my toes with follow up calls to see how I am getting on. I have recommended the course to many of my friends.”