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This section contains media releases released a little while ago. Please note that due to the long time when some of these were released images have been removed and some links might no longer work.

August 3, 2012

Weight loss and physical activity programmes a first on the Coast

West Coast Primary Health Logo

Free weight-loss and physical activity programmes are a first for the Coast, offering support, monitoring and education for people concerned about their weight and/or eager to become more physically active.

The weight-loss programme is targeted at those who are both overweight (BMI greater than 25) and showing signs of developing diabetes. It involves six group sessions over a 12 week period.

The physical activity programme is also built around six group sessions over a 12 week period. The aim is to give people who lead physically inactive lives the skills, knowledge and confidence to become independently physically active.

The West Coast PHO designed and funded programmes build on the work local life-coach Cathy Edwards has been doing on a private basis. Local providers include Buller Medical Centre, the Solid Energy Centre and Cathy.

Pauline Ansley, nurse manager at Buller Medical Centre, says the programmes are "a wonderful initiative and a fantastic opportunity for people in Westport".

"Nurses are reporting that Westport patients are excited about new services that will support people committed to losing weight and becoming more physically active."

The medical centre's role is to identify potential participants, invite them to an initial appointment and, if they meet the criteria, refer them to either the physical activity programme or the weight loss service.

Buller Medical Centre nurse Davinia Bowden has been calling people to invite them to an assessment.

"The feedback we are getting is that because the medical centre is proactively identifying people, patients feel someone actually cares about them and the challenges they are facing.

"Some potential participants have said the programme sounds exactly like what they need and what they've been waiting and hoping for ... all they needed was someone who would take an interest and offer some help."

Participants will pay for their initial assessment at the Medical Centre when their blood tests and baseline measures will be taken. Once they have completed one or other of the programmes they will return to the Medical Centre at three, six and 12 month intervals for progress blood tests and measurments.

The 12-week programmes and all three subsequent appointments are free to the patient.

For more information contact Helen Reriti, Clinical Manager, WCPHO, (03) 768 6182.

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