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Promoting exercise behaviour in a secure mental health setting: health care assistant perspectives

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posted on 18.05.2018 by Florence Kinnafick, Anthony Papathomas, Dora Regoczi
Individuals with severe mental illness engage in significantly less amounts of physical activity than the general population. A secure mental health setting can exacerbate barriers to exercise, and facilitate physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour. Health Care Assistants are intimately involved in the daily lives of patients and therefore, should be considered integral to exercise promotion in secure mental health settings. Our aim was to explore Health Care Assistants perceptions of exercise and their attitudes to exercise promotion for adult patients in a secure mental health hospital. Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 11 Health Care Assistants from a large UK based secure mental health hospital. Topics included Health Care Assistants personal experiences of exercise within a secure facility, their perceptions of exercise as an effective treatment tool for mental health, and their perceived roles and responsibilities for exercise promotion. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data. Three main themes were identified; 1) exercise as multiply beneficial for patients, 2) perceived barriers to effective exercise promotion, and 3) strategies for effectives exercise promotion. Health Care Assistants considered exercise to hold patient benefits. However, core organisational and individual barriers limited Health Care Assistants exercise promotion efforts. An informal approach to exercise promotion was deemed most effective to some, whereas others committed to more formal strategies including compulsory sessions. With education and organisational support, we propose Health Care Assistants are well placed to identify individual needs for exercise promotion. Their consultation could lead to more efficacious, person-sensitive interventions.

Funding

We would like to thank St Andrews Healthcare Charity for providing access to this unique setting and aiding the process of recruiting HCAs to take part in the interviews.

History

School

  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

International Journal of Mental Health Nursing

Citation

KINNAFICK, F-E., PAPATHOMAS, A. and REGOCZI, D., 2018. Promoting exercise behaviour in a secure mental health setting: health care assistant perspectives. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 27 (6), pp.1776-1783.

Publisher

© Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. Published by Wiley

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Acceptance date

30/04/2018

Publication date

2018

Notes

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: KINNAFICK, F-E., PAPATHOMAS, A. and REGOCZI, D., 2018. Promoting exercise behaviour in a secure mental health setting: health care assistant perspectives. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 27 (6), pp.1776-1783., which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/inm.12484 .This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.

ISSN

1445-8330

Language

en

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