Ciarán Morrison

Digital Solutions Supporting Healthy Weight Management and the Type 2 Diabetes Prevention Framework

17th June 2021

Digital Solutions Supporting Healthy Weight Management and the Type 2 Diabetes Prevention Framework

The most recent addition to Scotland’s diabetes policy environment came in July 2018, when the Scottish Government released ‘A Healthier Future – Framework for the Prevention, Early Detection and Early Intervention of type 2 diabetes’. The Framework provides guidance to delivery Public Sector partners for the implementation of new and enhanced weight management pathways. These pathways will sit within and beside integrated weight management services that will support its delivery partners in achieving the shared aim of improved weight management service to support better outcomes for people across Scotland. This report, produced by the Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre (DHI), has been commissioned by the Diet and Healthy Weight Team of the Scottish Government in response to current policy. The report aims to present a brief view of the current options available for digital solutions supporting healthy weight management and type 2 diabetes prevention. The solutions, identified via desktop research, were included on the basis that they are based in the United Kingdom and provide one or more of the following services: early intervention; type 2 diabetes prevention; type 2 diabetes management; management for adolescents with type 2 diabetes; gestational diabetes management; childhood weight management; overall weight management; prenatal weight management services; and educational resources for all listed categories. The research revealed little to no new information on novel solutions to digital type 2 diabetes and weight management from what has been discovered in previous DHI research into digital management and education solutions [30 & 31]. No specific digital solutions to support postpartum and child weight management were found. However, the approach to weight management should remain roughly the same with amendments made for the individual categories, meaning the solutions listed above may be of use across type 2 and gestational diabetes as well as adult, postpartum and child weight management categories. Throughout the report the Quality Institute for Self-Management Education & Training (QISMET) will be referred to, QISMET develops standards for good practice in self-management education and certifies products against said standards. Additionally, the report discusses the NHS App Library and solutions implemented by Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) within NHS England. Whilst not all of these solutions are available in Scotland, they show that certain digital solutions already meet the standards required for type 2 diabetes and weight management in NHS England. Although further assessment is required to ensure they meet Scottish standards, they are in principle wellplaced to be rolled out in NHS Scotland and they are ready to scale in areas that adopt them. A working example of this is the Oviva solution being implemented and tested in NHS Tayside, which is also being used by NHS in England. Interoperability was used as a key criterion in the approval process for all Digital Diabetes Prevention Programme (DDPP) solutions. While their involvement in the programme highlights their interoperability, there is a lack of evidence as to the extent of that interoperability and what the potential for these solutions to integrate with the board architecture within NHS Scotland is. Therefore, that will warrant further consideration.