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Across Kent 28.1% of adults are classed as physically inactive. KCC Public Health department wants to commission a programme to reduce inactivity in high risk individuals, especially those with, or at high risk of acquiring, diseases caused or exacerbated by physical inactivity.

CHSS has been commissioned to conduct an evaluation of KCC’s pilot programme targeting physical inactivity through selected GP surgeries. The evaluation, led by Dr Sarah Hotham, Chartered Psychologist and Research Fellow at CHSS will inform the design of a county-wide programme due to be rolled out in primary care in 2015/2016.

The first pilot is designed to successfully deliver a programme based on ‘Let’s Get Moving’ (LGM) a Department of Health intervention based on motivational interviewing (MI) and long term support for behaviour change around inactivity.

Recruitment will be in selected GP surgeries in catchment areas with high deprivation and high levels of inactivity. The focus is on high risk physically inactive individuals with conditions caused or exacerbated by their low activity levels. UK active, a not-for-profit health body for the physical activity sector, will  screen and invite participants to receive 12 weeks of MI and support (with follow up at 6 and 12 months), delivered by a network of specially recruited practitioners.

The programme aims to:

  • increase and sustain regular physical activity levels county wide.
  • reduce reliance on costly medication for conditions which could be affected by adopting an active, healthy lifestyle.
  • ensure maximum return on existing public health Investment by linking to wider primary care services
  • build on successes to embed scalable, replicable physical activity interventions in partner services and networks and as a preventative in disease pathways

The evaluation team will gather qualitative and quantitative data, including semi structured interviews with primary care staff involved in the screening and recruitment process. A framework analysis will be undertaken to identify emerging themes from the interviews.

As well as identifying characteristics in patients who changed behaviours (in order to predict future success), the evaluation will address questions around feasibility, scalability, effectiveness and cost effectiveness of patient screening, and the recruitment of practitioners to deliver the interventions.

A final report will be provided when 12-month follow-up monitoring is complete. It will provide details of the findings and recommendations for future commissioning of a county-wide physical inactivity service.

Start date: 03/03/2015 End date: 31/03/2017

Funder: Kent County Council

Funding £4,000

Evaluation of KCC physical inactivity pilot final report here

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Centre for Health Services Studies, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NF

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Last Updated: 30/01/2017