Conversations About Weight

Online weight management training for health professionals

Learn how to support people living with overweight and obesity with these six one-hour modules that focus on different aspects of weight management, including causes and treatments, from both a patient and health professional perspective.

Developed by Diabetes WA, the modules are an RACGP accredited CPD activity, with two CPD points available per module.

  • This module sets the scene to explore the multitude of factors to be considered when discussing weight, the most important of which is a person-centred approach, which can help you tailor conversations, education and treatments to the patient’s individual circumstances.

    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to: 
    – Recall the prevalence of Australians with a weight above the healthy range
    – Describe some outcomes and impacts of being above the healthy weight range 
    – Define weight stigma
    – Recall treatment approaches available to assist with weight loss
    – Identify examples of how you can ask, assess, advise, assist and arrange support for a person living above the healthy weight range
    – Describe some of the drivers of obesity.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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  • This module explains how the language used in conversations about weight can impact on an individual to help or hinder their approach. It also explores the issue of weight stigma in detail and outlines the challenging situations that you may encounter in general practice.

    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to: 
    – Understand the importance of initiating conversations about weight with patients with overweight or obesity
    – Identify common barriers to initiating patient conversations about weight
    – Understand common patient perspectives in relation to discussing weight management with a doctor
    – Understand the meaning of the terms ‘person-centred care’ and ‘shared decision making’, and identify the benefits of those approaches
    – Identify ways to adopt person-centred care for the treatment and management of overweight and obesity 
    – Understand the relationship between weight stigma and poor health outcomes 
    – Recognise and adopt language that minimises weight stigma
    – Identify resources which outline non-judgmental language between healthcare professionals and patients who are managing their weight.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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  • This module discusses strategies that have been used for weight loss, together with strategies that can be used to support an individual to improve their physical, emotional and mental health. It also covers the pros and cons and important considerations for selecting various strategies.

    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to:
    – Identify the broad categories for weight loss strategies
    – Identify the priority considerations for each category of weight loss strategy
    – Understand that there is ‘no one right strategy’ for weight loss
    – Recognise when additional expertise can be of assistance to provide specialised and timely support
    – Understand that intervention is best tailored to a person.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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  • This module explains how to support a patient to adopt and maintain health behaviour change that incorporates person-centred action planning.
     
    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to:
    – Recall the steps involved in developing SMART-ER goals with a patient focus
    – Demonstrate an understanding of person-centred goal setting
    – Support patients with the formation of action plans
    – Describe how coping plans can be used to discuss potential barriers to behaviour change.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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  • This module covers easy-to-adopt counselling techniques that can help to activate a person to make the health behaviour changes necessary for weight loss/maintenance.
     
    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to:
    – Identify drivers associated with successful behaviour change and maintenance of health behaviours in the longer term
    – Understand how you can support the needs of patients to facilitate healthy motivation for behaviour change
    – Understand the aims of counselling a patient in relation to weight loss/maintenance
    – Identify a range of counselling techniques that can be adopted throughout the consultation to support the patient to commit to making health behaviour change and maintain those behaviours over time.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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  • This module pulls together the learnings from the previous modules with four practice scenarios/case studies to help you put into action the techniques discussed.
     
    Upon completion of this module, you will be able to:
    – Use and apply the learnings from all the modules in practice scenarios
    – Identify opportunities to initiate and engage in person-centred discussions in practice
    – Initiate conversations about weight management without bias, judgement or blame
    – Problem solve issues commonly seen in general practice.

    You should allow approximately one hour to complete this module. Two CPD points are available under the RACGP CPD Program.

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Other learning and education resources you may find useful

Training and Professional Development for Clinical Health Professionals
Access additional courses and training opportunities in areas such as motivational interviewing and talking with patients about health and weight.

Motivational Interviewing Podcast (via Distance is no obstacle, Rural Health West)
Listen to this discussion by Dr Stavroula Zandes, founder of Health and Wellbeing Consultants, on how motivational interviewing can be used to empower your patients to make positive health behaviour change. 

Weight management advice for GPs – Education in Nutrition
Learn evidence based approaches for weight management, common weight loss diets and practical tips that can be used in practice with patients. As an RACGP accredited presentation, you can claim 2x category 2 CPD points by viewing the presentation and completing the assessment quiz. Delivered by Susie Burrell, Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) & B.Sc (Psych) (Hons).

Unpacking Weight Science – Dr Fiona Willer, Open Learning
Led by Advanced Accredited Practicing Dietitian, Fiona Willer, learn how to interpret weight related research, including identification of weight bias. Also provided is an overview of weight neutral interventions which incorporate health promoting behaviors, enhanced body image and self acceptance. Cost: $79. Duration: 5 hours.