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Potential Public Health Impact

Reach: This program has the potential to reach an underserved population - low-income and African American women. The women who participated in the test of the intervention’s effectiveness were low income, almost all lacked health insurance, and 38% were African American.  Over 80% of participants were retained in the program.

Effectiveness:  The findings from one study suggest that the intervention is effective at reducing weight, body fat, and blood pressure; improving dietary intake, and increasing moderate physical activity. The intervention is an adaptation of the Diabetes Prevention Program, which has strong evidence in support of its effectiveness.

Adoption: For the study testing the translation of the intervention across multiple sites, researchers invited all geographically accessible health departments to participate. Of the 43 eligible, 30 were interested in participating suggesting strong adoption potential. Rochester Prevention Research Center began its adaptation of the Weight-Wise intervention program for the deaf population in 2009.

Implementation: Implementation in the initial study (one site) was strong with high retention and good attendance and adherence to record keeping. A group intervention has promise as a feasible approach in health departments.

Maintenance: Only preliminary data is available about maintenance5; see Reference section.