Solera Health is adding yet another Diabetes Prevention Program “variant” to its offering; this time round, the company has teamed-up with Weight Watchers to make their Prediabetes offering available to its health plan clients.
Weight Watchers, which is already recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as a provider of the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP), provides a combination of face-to-face and online tools to help people with prediabetes reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
“Our partnership with Solera Health will enable Weight Watchers to bring our evidence-based and scalable solution to healthcare providers and payers, and ultimately reach and favorably impact more at-risk individuals,” Gary Foster, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer at Weight Watchers International, said in a statement.
The partnership will enable Weight Watchers to leverage payer reimbursement for diabetes prevention programs and encourage referrals by healthcare providers. As the reach of the program expands and insurance reimbursement is put in place, health care teams are encouraged to screen, test and refer patients with prediabetes to National DPPs such as Weight Watchers. For qualified patients, coverage for the Weight Watchers DPP as an ACA benefit will be communicated through their employer or health plan.
“With the addition of Weight Watchers to our network of National DPP providers, we are giving individuals enhanced options and greater access to an effective lifestyle modification program, proven among those with prediabetes, which can help stem the growing diabetes epidemic,” Brenda Schmidt, CEO of Solera Health, said in a statement.
A recent study conducted by Indiana University School of Medicine, supported by Weight Watchers, and published in the American Journal for Public Health, found that adults with prediabetes who participated in the prediabetes specific Weight Watchers program lost significantly more weight and experienced better blood glucose control than those following a self-initiated program using supplemental counseling materials. On average, Weight Watchers participants lost 5.5% of their body weight at six months and fully maintained that loss at 12 months, while the control group lost 0.8% of their body weight at six months and experienced slight regain for a loss of 0.2% of their body weight at 12 months.