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Enroll and Retain National DPP Participants

It’s important to recruit and retain participants for your class who are ready to make healthy changes. There are a variety of ways you can improve retention.

Enrolling Participants

Please contact your local health department lead or the Utah Department of Health for assistance.

Determine Eligibility

Only adults 18 years and older who have a BMI of ≥ to 24 kg/m2 (≥ to 22 kg/m2, if Asian) will be eligible to attend class. Additionally, a person must have a qualifying blood test (may be self-reported) or screen positive for prediabetes based on any of the following Prediabetes Risk Screening Tests.

Participant eligibility criteria is included in the DPRP standards (page 4; PDF)

Register Participants

Once you have set up a class, you will want to register participants and determine eligibility to attend. Refer back to the Data page for details on information you'll need to collect.

  1. Review our Registration Process Map (PDF) and register participants online by searching for your class on our Living Well Utah workshop search.
  2. Once a person signs up for your class, go through the Flow chart of what you do after a participant signs up for class (PDF).
  3. After you determine eligibility of each participant, collect the Eligibility Survey – English (PDF) or Eligibility Survey – Spanish (PDF). The Eligibility Survey data will need to be entered into Compass for each participant.
  4. During the first class, have each person fill out a Participant Agreement Form SAMPLE (PDF) and Informed Consent SAMPLE (PDF).
  5. At six-months or after class is completed have each participant fill out an After National DPP Survey (PDF).

The Right Participants

A yearlong prediabetes class is quite a commitment, and you want to be sure that participants that sign up will be ready to make changes.

  1. Consider having each participant answer one or two of the Readiness for Change Questions (PDF) or assess if someone is Ready For Change Now (PDF). If they are ready, sign them up! If not, ask if you can contact them in 6-months? 1-year?
  2. Offer an informational Session Zero before class begins so that potential participants know the expectations for the class. Watch "Engagement Strategies for National DPP Lifestyle Change Programs - Spotlighting Session Zero" (video) for ideas on how to set up a successful Session Zero.
  3. Have each person fill out a Participant Agreement Form (PDF) on the first day of class and save them to show a formal commitment of participation.
  4. Use Ambassadors or Community Health Workers (CHW’s) who know the communities you’re trying to reach and who are known in the community to help you get the word out about your classes.

Retaining Participants

Once you've enrolled the right participants, how will you keep them coming back to class for a year?

Keys to a Successful Program

One predictor of successful participant weight loss so far has been class attendance and minutes of physical activity. In a new research article, for every additional session attended and every 30 minutes of activity reported, participants lost 0.3% of body weight. Also see enrolling the right participants above.

Source: A National Effort to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes: Participant-Level Evaluation of CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program, Diabetes Journal 2017

Other Strategies to Improve Retention

  1. Use FaceBook and other social media (engage, engage!).
  2. Host field trips to grocery stores.
  3. Text messaging reminders/content review from virtual programs as a good substitute for personal interaction.
  4. Use of participant buddies.
  5. Provide small incentives for success at meeting program milestones. Use teaching tools such as measuring cups and resistance bands as a giveaway.
  6. Use previous successful participants as speakers during class.
  7. Collect and share participant testimonials/success stories.
  8. Track your participant data so you know what’s going on and use data at mid-course adjustments before it’s too late!
  9. Start a mentor program for new coaches. If your leaders are awesome, the participants will stay. Also, spend more time recruiting the right coaches.

Suggested Meeting Frequency

The following class schedule is one way to help retain participants:

  1. Month 1: Meet every week (4 times)
  2. Months 2-6: Meet every other week (12 times)
  3. Months 7-12: Meet once per month or more (6 times or more)

Once you transition to meeting once per month in the last 6-months, participants will be used to meeting less often and hopefully the attendance rate will not drop off.

CDC Resources to Encourage Participant Retention