A randomised controlled trial evaluating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of ‘Families for Health’, a family-based childhood obesity treatment intervention.

West MidlandsMetabolic and Endocrine
Start Date: 20 Mar 2013

Project summary

The prevalence of childhood obesity in the UK is high, and the NHS needs programmes which are effective in helping children who are already obese or overweight. A new programme called ‘Families for Health’ has been developed at the University of Warwick to help families reduce obesity in children aged 6 to 11.

Aim of the project

The aims of the research are to find out if the ‘Families for Health’ programme manages to reduce the degree of overweight (BMI z-score) and to estimate whether the programme is value for money.​


This is a group-based programme, 10 weeks long, involving children and their parents. In addition to a focus on healthy eating and activity, it is designed to help parents develop their parenting skills to support lifestyle changes within the family. This study is a randomised controlled trial comparing Families for Health with the ‘usual care’ across in Coventry, Warwickshire and Wolverhampton. 120 families will be randomly allocated to the two treatment arms.

Dr Sarah Flanagan