How to get free weight loss plan on NHS – scheme expanded to pharmacies

Individuals who match specific criteria will now be able to access a comprehensive 12-week scheme which aims to help people lose weight through a plan of diet and exercise.

Having previously only been available through a GP consultation, the move is set to make the scheme more accessible and ease strain on the NHS.

More than 50,000 referrals have already been made, to a program which is largely viewed as a success in an effort to develop a healthier population.

UK-wide NHS costs attributable to overweight and obese individuals are projected to reach £9.7 billion by 2050, according to official Government statistics.

Meanwhile, diabetes, often byproduct of being overweight already costs the NHS £1.5million per-hour.

A recent report found that over 60 percent of adults in England are at risk of developing chronic health problems due to their weight.

In 2020, a whopping 67 percent of men and 60 percent of women were either overweight or obese.

That is over 35 million individuals.

Perhaps most worryingly, 20 percent of Year 6 children were classified as obese.

How to get free weight loss plan on NHS

To qualify for a free weight loss plan on the NHS, you need to meet certain criteria.

Those wanting to access the program must have a body max index, known as a BMI, of over 30 to be accepted.

However, if you are come from an Asian, black or ethnic minority background you can join the scheme with a BMI of 27.5. This is due to these groups having an increased likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes.

You can check your body mass index by entering your height and weight into this BMI calculator here provided by the NHS.

Dr Bruce Warner, deputy chief pharmaceutical officer at NHS England, said: “The radical action plan means it is now easier for people to take control of their health – adults with obesity can now walk into any high street community pharmacy to take the first step we have a life-changing weight loss journey.”

The 12-week plan includes tailored diets and exercise, specially designed to help you lose weight safely and sustainably.

It also includes access to weight loss apps and some people can get one-on-one support.


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