The free NHS Digital Weight Management programme is available to refer into now from all community pharmacies to members of the public who fit the eligibility criteria.
To make a referral, please visit the NHS Digital Weight Management programme pharmacy referral site (you’ll need your pharmacy ODS code for access). Referrals from pharmacy are only accepted online through this website.
Template documents are available on the NHS Digital Weight Management programme template site – these forms will support pharmacy teams in making a referral.
The NHS Digital Weight Management programme offers online access to weight management services to those living with obesity who also have a diagnosis of either diabetes, or hypertension, or both.
With three levels of support and a choice of providers, it is designed to offer service users a personalised level of intervention to support them to manage their weight and improve longer term health outcomes.
We have summarised the information that will enable you to refer safely and effectively below. For any other information, please look at the General practice toolkit (a pharmacy version is coming soon)
Who is eligible
Referrals to the NHS Digital Weight Management programme are accepted for those who meet all the following criteria:
- over the age of 18
- has a BMI of 30+ (adjusted to ≥27.5 for people from Black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds)
- has a diagnosis of diabetes (type 1 or type 2) or hypertension or both.
How to refer
The identification and referral of users to the service will be dependent on the support of those working in pharmacy.
Patients will have a choice of provider for a 12-week digital weight management service.
The role of pharmacy
Step 1 – During a routine contact, the pharmacy team may identify a patient as eligible for the NHS Digital Weight Management programme.
Step 2 – If eligible, the pharmacy team can refer the patient into the programme by visiting the NHS Digital Weight Management Programme Pharmacy Referral website. The pharmacy team will need to have access to a nhs.net email address in order to complete the authentication process.
Once a referral is submitted, confirmation will be sent to the pharmacy teams email address and there is nothing more the pharmacy team will need to do to support the referral process.
What the service user will need to do
Step 3 – The service user is contacted via a text message within two working days, with a link that will enable them to complete the referral process online.
Step 4 – The online referral hub will ask the service user to verify their date of birth and ethnicity to support their triage to the appropriate level of intervention. They will then be able to select their preferred programme from a choice of providers.
Step 5 – The chosen provider will contact the service user within 10 working days to start their programme.
For service users who do not initially respond to the text message, they will be contacted by phone by the Referral Management Centre to support them through the triage process. If you have any other general questions about the programme, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please do not send through any patient data.
All general practices can refer eligible patients into the NHS Digital Weight Management programme. Further information is available on our GP resources web page.