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      Moving healthcare professionals – a whole system approach to embed physical activity in clinical practice

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          Healthcare professionals are key informants to support individual behaviour change, and although there has been some progress in empowering clinicians to promote physical activity and health at work, an effective strategy overarching the whole medical educational journey is still lacking. This report provides an overview from the Moving Healthcare Professionals programme (MHPP), a whole-system educational approach to embed prevention and physical activity promotion into clinical practice.


          The MHPP model integrates educational resources into three core domains of medical education: undergraduate education, postgraduate education and continuing professional development. The interventions are designed to spiral through existing educational approaches rather than as additional special study modules or bolt-on courses, thus reducing self-selection bias in exposure. Interventions include spiral undergraduate education materials, e-learning, embedded post-graduate resources and face-to-face peer-to-peer education.


          To date the MHPP model has been applied in two key areas, physical activity and health and work. The physical activity programme in a partnership between Public Health England and Sport England has delivered face-to-face training to 17,105 healthcare professionals, embedded materials in almost three quarters of English medical schools and overseen > 95,000 e-learning modules completed over two and half years. Evaluation of the individual elements of the model is ongoing and aims to show improvements in knowledge, skills and practice. Further evaluation is planned to assess patient impact.


          The MHPP model offers a coherent whole-system approach to embed public health action into existing healthcare education models, and as such provides a framework for rapid change as well as upstream implementation to support the clinicians of today and tomorrow.

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          Most cited references 25

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          Physical activity habits of doctors and medical students influence their counselling practices.

          Doctors are well positioned to provide physical activity (PA) counselling to patients. They are a respected source of health-related information and can provide continuing preventive counselling feedback and follow-up; they may have ethical obligations to prescribe PA. Several barriers to PA counselling exist, including insufficient training and motivation of doctors and improvable, personal PA habits. Rates of exercise counselling by doctors remain low; only 34% of US adults report exercise counselling at their last medical visit. In view of this gap, one of the US health objectives for 2010 is increasing the proportion of patients appropriately counselled about health behaviours, including exercise/PA. Research shows that clinical providers who themselves act on the advice they give provide better counselling and motivation of their patients to adopt such health advice. In summary, there is compelling evidence that the health of doctors matters and that doctors' own PA practices influence their clinical attitudes towards PA. Medical schools need to increase the proportion of students adopting and maintaining regular PA habits to increase the rates and quality of future PA counselling delivered by doctors.
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            What is a spiral curriculum?

             R Harden (1998)
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              Online eLearning for undergraduates in health professions: A systematic review of the impact on knowledge, skills, attitudes and satisfaction

              Background Health systems worldwide are facing shortages in health professional workforce. Several studies have demonstrated the direct correlation between the availability of health workers, coverage of health services, and population health outcomes. To address this shortage, online eLearning is increasingly being adopted in health professionals’ education. To inform policy–making, in online eLearning, we need to determine its effectiveness. Methods We performed a systematic review of the effectiveness of online eLearning through a comprehensive search of the major databases for randomised controlled trials that compared online eLearning to traditional learning or alternative learning methods. The search period was from January 2000 to August 2013. We included articles which primarily focused on students' knowledge, skills, satisfaction and attitudes toward eLearning and cost-effectiveness and adverse effects as secondary outcomes. Two reviewers independently extracted data from the included studies. Due to significant heterogeneity among the included studies, we presented our results as a narrative synthesis. Findings Fifty–nine studies, including 6750 students enrolled in medicine, dentistry, nursing, physical therapy and pharmacy studies, met the inclusion criteria. Twelve of the 50 studies testing knowledge gains found significantly higher gains in the online eLearning intervention groups compared to traditional learning, whereas 27 did not detect significant differences or found mixed results. Eleven studies did not test for differences. Six studies detected significantly higher skill gains in the online eLearning intervention groups, whilst 3 other studies testing skill gains did not detect differences between groups and 1 study showed mixed results. Twelve studies tested students' attitudes, of which 8 studies showed no differences in attitudes or preferences for online eLearning. Students' satisfaction was measured in 29 studies, 4 studies showed higher satisfaction for online eLearning and 20 studies showed no difference in satisfaction between online eLearning and traditional learning. Risk of bias was high for several of the included studies. Conclusion The current evidence base suggests that online eLearning is equivalent, possibly superior to traditional learning. These findings present a potential incentive for policy makers to cautiously encourage its adoption, while respecting the heterogeneity among the studies.

                Author and article information

                BMC Med Educ
                BMC Med Educ
                BMC Medical Education
                BioMed Central (London )
                15 March 2019
                15 March 2019
                : 19
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0004 5909 016X, GRID grid.271308.f, Public Health England, ; London, UK
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0001 0693 2181, GRID grid.417895.6, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, ; London, UK
                [3 ]ISNI 0000 0001 1172 3106, GRID grid.423075.7, Public Health, Birmingham City Council, ; Birmingham, UK
                © The Author(s). 2019

                Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100002141, Public Health England;
                Funded by: Sport England
                Award ID: N/A
                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100000386, Burdett Trust for Nursing;
                Award ID: N/A
                Funded by: Department of Health (GB)
                Award ID: N/A
                Funded by: Department of Work and Pensions (GB)
                Award ID: N/A
                Technical Advance
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                © The Author(s) 2019


                elearning, physical activity, medical education, whole system approach


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