NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP)

Most people would be shocked to know that around 22,000 people with diabetes die early every year. Type 2 diabetes is a leading cause of preventable sight loss in people of working age and is a major contributor to kidney failure, heart attack, and stroke.

As well as the human cost, Type 2 diabetes treatment accounts for just under nine per cent of the annual NHS budget. This is around £8.8 billion a year.

There are currently five million people in England at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. If these trends persist, one in three people will be obese by 2034 and one in 10 will develop Type 2 diabetes. However, evidence shows that many cases of Type 2 diabetes are preventable.

There is also strong international evidence which demonstrates how behavioural interventions, which support people to maintain a healthy weight and be more active, can significantly reduce the risk of developing the condition.

The Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP) will identify those at high risk and refer them onto a behaviour change programme.

The NHS DPP is a joint commitment from NHS England, Public Health England and Diabetes UK.

NHS DPP national rollout

Healthier You: The NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme started in 2016 with a first wave of 27 areas covering 26 million people, half of the population, and making up to 20,000 places available. This will roll out to the whole country by 2020 with an expected 100,000 referrals available each year after.

Those referred will get tailored, personalised help to reduce their risk of Type 2 diabetes including education on healthy eating and lifestyle, help to lose weight and bespoke physical exercise programmes, all of which together have been proven to reduce the risk of developing the disease.

There are currently 2.8 million people with Type 2 diabetes in England with around 200,000 new diagnoses every year. While Type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented and is not linked to lifestyle, Type 2 diabetes is largely preventable through lifestyle changes.

One in six of all people in hospital have diabetes – while diabetes is often not the reason for admission, they often need a longer stay in hospital, are more likely to be re admitted and their risk of dying is higher.

NHS DPP demonstrator sites

Seven demonstrator sites have been testing innovative approaches to programme delivery for the last year and this learning has shaped the final programme to get the best results for patients.

The demonstrator sites are:

  • Birmingham South and Central CCG
  • Bradford City CCG
  • Durham County Council
  • Herefordshire CCG/LA
  • Medway CCG/LA
  • Salford CCG/LA
  • Southwark Council and CCG

Read the news story about the announcement of the demonstrator sites.