NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme – digital stream

The Heathier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP) was officially launched in 2016 to support people who are at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Those referred on to the face-to-face programme get tailored, personalised help, including education on lifestyle choices, advice on how to reduce weight through healthier eating and bespoke physical activity programmes, which together have been proven to reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

The digital stream offers similar support, assistance and guidance but through the use of digital interventions such as:

  • wearable technologies that monitor levels of exercise
  • apps which allow users to access health coaches
  • online peer support groups
  • the ability to set and monitor goals electronically.

This online method of recording activity and monitoring progress has the potential to have the same impact as face-to-face interventions – helping bring down high blood sugar levels and in turn prevent or delay onset of the disease.

Pilot areas

Five providers and eight pilot areas have been selected to pilot the digital interventions. Up to 5,000 patients will be recruited over a six month period, with access to the digital interventions for up to 12 months. The aim of this pilot is to establish whether digital interventions are effective in supporting behaviour change in those with non-diabetic hyperglycaemia (NDH) and overweight and or obese individuals who have not been diagnosed with NDH.

The eight pilot areas are:

  • North East London sustainability and transformation partnership (STP)
  • Somerset STP
  • Humber Coast and Vale STP
  • Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire STP
  • Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire STP
  • Lancashire and South Cumbria STP
  • Central London, West London, Hammersmith and Fulham, Hounslow and Ealing (CWHHE)
  • Salford

RSM have been appointed by the programme to support implementation and undertake an evaluation of the interventions.

Five digital products have been selected to take part in the pilot. These were identified by:

  • An open call for products which received 87 applications.
  • Identification of a shortlist using a third party “app” assessor and the NHS Digital Service Assessment Framework.
  • RSM assessment and interviews with digital providers to gain assurance on financial stability and to further understand level of operational support for implementation and ongoing support for referrals that can be provided.
  • A detailed review of diet and nutrition content undertaken by PHE Diet and Obesity Team to ensure products are aligned with national policy and guidance
  • Confirmation that the mix of products selected meet the needs of the evaluation.

Find out more

For more information on the digital stream of the NHS DPP, email england.digitaldiabetes@nhs.net.