Carnegie Weight Management, NHS Peterborough

Project context

Carnegie Weight Management (CWM) concentrates on a new service commissioned by NHS Peterborough as part of its response to increases in childhood obesity. The city currently has one of the highest childhood obesity rates for Year 6 children.

The data that is used locally is from the National Childhood Measurement Programme (NCMP). This is a national Department of Health (DH) initiative that measures children in both Reception and Year 6. The data is generated annually and is used to dictate the direction of travel in conjunction with other childhood obesity measures.

CWM replaces a previous childhood obesity service. The programme aims to improve the health of children between two and 17 years of age who are overweight or obese. It also provides families with the relevant support and information to help them make healthy, informed choices to maintain a healthy weight. The commissioning process for the programme started in October 2009 and delivery began in May 2010.

The programme focuses on a number of elements that directly influence and affect a child's weight. These include diet and nutrition, physical activity, anthropometric measurements, behavioural change to the sustainability of change. It is delivered as a 12-week intervention with a six month and 12-month follow-up period. It will be formally evaluated at various points between May 2010 to July 2011.

Overview of the project

The learning set project focused more specifically on the evaluation of the referral process for the CWM programme, one part of a much larger strategy for children and young people in Peterborough. The stakeholder engagement programme aimed to:

  • inform key stakeholders of the recruitment referral process
  • inform key stakeholders of the CWM programmes in Peterborough
  • produce a useful resource to help health professionals and practitioners, to recruit families successfully in accordance to the eligibility criteria.
  • create the awareness of CWM programmes in Peterborough through Clinical Governance sessions and other forums.
  • create awareness of programmes through social marketing strategy and communications and media provision.
  • The NCMP programme provides a clear format for referring children who are overweight or obese onto the CWM programmes and allows a number of approaches in generating referrals.

These include:

  • Carnegie Weight Management website - self-referral
  • clinical referral
  • non-clinical referral
  • a direct contact number to the public health team
  • an email programme lead with referral information
  • a referral form sent to stakeholders.

Some of the different methods of stakeholder engagement have included; stakeholder presentation events, attending team meetings, attending professional development meetings, attending clinical governance sessions, sending information to stakeholders through direct mail and email.

Stakeholders are informed regularly through email of the new programme dates and locations of the programmes. In addition, a referral guide has been developed to help stakeholders understand who, how and where they can make a referral.

What will success look like?

Stakeholder engagement is a key success criteria in order to reach those at risk who will benefit most from the programme and ensure equality of access. More than 800 stakeholders have been informed of the programmes including clinicians and non-clinical practitioners. A successful outcome will be that referrals are received through all the potential routes and particularly those that are able to access Peterborough's six priority areas.

Measuring success

Data has been collated on the referrals that have been generated by the different stakeholder routes. This will provide the evidence to show clearly where and by whom referrals are being generated.

The following indicators were chosen to measure success in tracking referrals:

■ Information on the number of families referred onto the CWM programmes through the stakeholder engagement model
■ Number of key referrers
■ Number of health professional networks referring families to the CWM programmes
■ Identifying which areas of Peterborough where the referrals are coming from and whether this was reflective of the six key areas
■ NCMP data 2009 to 2010 for Year 6
■ The number of media communication's publications promoting CWM
■ Cases studies of families referred through the health professional route.

To target data collection at relevant points in the initiative, a logic model was constructed to show the flow of roles and responsibilities. The logic model set milestones to ensure that sufficient quantitative and qualitative data are collected at various points.


The CWM programme is still work in progress, but there is a clear process for tracking:

■ stakeholder engagement data
■ initial source of referral
■ stakeholder involvement and responsibility
■ programme mapping
■ venue mapping and contact and outcome of partnership work
■ training of staff to facilitate the programme
■ qualitative data collection with clinical approval and validation
■ quantitative data collection and clinical approval and validation
■ media collateral printing
■ media collateral requests and stakeholder information awareness.

Early data, for example suggesting that groups such as GPs are still not referring. This means that resources can be targeted to find out why and to ensure they (GPs) are aware of the programme.

Personal learning

“The action learning sets have provided a steep learning curve for me and I have understood the importance of developing a service where a number of areas are encompassed within the successful development and implementation of that service. I also felt that by attending the set meetings I gained clearer focus and direction in my work.

“Through the regular learning sets I gained sufficient support to understand the areas where data collection is key and how to implement a number of measures to ensure that I capture that information.

“The facilitated action learning sets worked very well and also provided support through literature and resources.”