Micro interventions that make a big difference

“While you’re here, I just want to talk about your weight.”

Even very simply and directly bringing up overweight patients’ weight for 30 seconds helped them reduce it 12 months later.

Intervention Outcomes
(Average weight loss 12 months later)
30 second intervention 1kg
30 second intervention + referral to a weight management group like Slimming World 2.4kg

Unfortunately the report doesn’t contrast with any normal weight loss (or gain) without any intervention.  In general, however, the norm is keeping weight or increasing it rather than losing it.

As we discuss in training sessions, notice the importance of HOW.  Referring a patient to a weight management group – providing them with a behaviour – led to over double the weight loss.

Also noticeable is that on average patients reacted positively to their doctor bringing it up.  Less than 1% found it inappropriate and unhelpful.  81% found it appropriate and helpful.  You want all your patients to have a positive experience visiting you.  But don’t let fear of disapproval from a small group lead you into doing a disservice to the much larger group who are ready to listen.