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Physical activity for the prevention and management of Long Term Conditions

Best Practice Birmingham 2022 Programme


Physical activity for the prevention and management of Long Term Conditions

13 Oct 2022
Best Practice Workshop Theatre

On behalf of OHID, in my role as a Physical Activity Clinical Champions, I am delivering training session to groups of healthcare professionals (HCPs).

The ongoing pandemic has highlighted the crucial role of physical activity in supporting people’s physical and mental health. However, a recent survey from Sport England shows that many people struggled to keep active during the first wave of Covid-19, with over 3 million adults reporting that they were less active compared to the previous year.

Supporting healthcare professionals to improve patient care and outcomes

Around 1 in 3 men and half of women are not achieving recommended levels of activity for good health, with people with long term conditions twice as likely to be amongst the least active. Physical activity is incorporated across NICE clinical guidance, with evidence suggesting 1 in 4 people would be more active if advised by a GP or nurse.

However, 70-80% of GPs do not speak about the benefits of physical activity to patients. This can be associated with knowledge, skills and confidence gaps across HCPs. For example, a survey of 1,000 GPs found:

· Less than half (44%) of GPs are confident speaking about physical activity with patients

· Over half (55%) of GPs had had no specific training on physical activity in patient care

· 4 in 5 (80%) of GPs not familiar with the UK Chief Medical Officers’ guidelines

Benefits of training

Attending this FREE training provides the opportunity to:

· Access evidence-based resources proven to increase knowledge and confidence, and support clinical practice in line with guidance (e.g. NICE)

· Improve management of patients with 30+ long-term conditions (e.g. CVD, type 2 diabetes, depression, MSK issues, some cancers).

· Help reduce service demand and costs i.e. the ~£0.9bn annual cost to the NHS associated with insufficient physical activity

The evidence

Over 25,000 HCPs have been trained so far. An independent evaluation demonstrated improvements in participant knowledge, confidence and frequency of patient physical activity conversations:

· 84% agreed the training was useful in their work

· 91% would recommend the training to their colleagues

· 40% of HCPs were having more conversations with their patients about physical activity post-training

PLEASE NOTE: This training is designed specifically for NHS Healthcare Professionals and Trainee Healthcare Professionals only.

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the UK Chief Medical Officers’ (CMOs) guidelines for physical activity;
  • Describe population physical activity levels at national and local levels;
  • Explain the benefits of physical activity for the management and prevention of long term conditions;
  • Apply this knowledge in your clinical care of patients through routine brief advice on physical activity.
Michelle Turner, GPN/ DSN - OHID