Physical activity promotion by GPs: a cross-sectional survey in England.

LOWE, Anna, MYERS, Anna, QUIRK, Helen, BLACKSHAW, Jamie, PALANEE, Sabrina and COPELAND, Robert (2022). Physical activity promotion by GPs: a cross-sectional survey in England. BJGP Open: 0227.

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BACKGROUND: Physical activity (PA) contributes to the prevention and management of many health conditions. Primary care practitioners have an important role to play in supporting people to be physically active. AIM: The study had three aims; 1) to explore general practitioners' (GPs) awareness, and knowledge of the PA guidelines, 2) to assess their confidence in promoting PA, and 3) to explore factors that influence PA promotion amongst GPs. DESIGN & SETTING: Cross-sectional survey, secondary analysis. METHOD: UK-based GPs were invited to take part in an online survey in January 2021. Demographic questions were followed by nine multiple choice questions. Categorical data were analysed using descriptive statistics and open-ended data were analysed using content analysis and inductive coding. RESULTS: Eight hundred and nine GPs based in England completed the survey. Most GP respondents (99%) believed that PA is important yet only 36% reported being at least 'somewhat familiar' with current PA guidance. Despite this, 74% of GPs reported feeling confident to raise the topic of PA with their patients. Barriers included lack of time, perceptions of patient attitude and perception of risk, language issues and COVID-19. Key facilitators were identified and 'Couch to 5 k' and the 'parkrun practice' initiative were the most widely used support tools. CONCLUSION: GPs value PA yet well-known barriers exist in embedding promotion into primary care. As primary care reconfigures there is an opportunity to embed PA into systems, services and processes.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Physical activity; general practice; general practitioners; primary care; public health
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SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 16 May 2022 15:48
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2023 10:47

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