Australian patients’ perception of the efficacy of the physical activity referral scheme (PARS)

Albert, Francis A., Malau-Aduli, Aduli E.O., Crowe, Melissa J., and Malau-Aduli, Bunmi S. (2021) Australian patients’ perception of the efficacy of the physical activity referral scheme (PARS). Patient Education and Counseling, 104. pp. 2803-2813.

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Background: Optimum physical activity (PA) interventions could be delivered via physical activity referral schemes (PARS) if utilised adequately. However, the evidence supporting PARS effectiveness is weak due to low uptake and non-adherence to interventions.

Objective: Patients’ experiences of PARS were explored to obtain in-depth insight into their perceived quality of care and practical ways to optimise the programme’s effectiveness.

Methods: A sequential explanatory mixed methods design was employed to probe cross-sectional quantitative survey data (n = 111) on patients’ knowledge and beliefs about PA and PARS and qualitative interview data (n = 15) on their experiences of PARS. Informed by Donabedian framework of healthcare quality assessment, quantitative and qualitative findings were integrated to identify practical ways to enhance PARS effectiveness.

Results: Participants displayed good PA knowledge, had positive beliefs and perceived PARS to be useful. Nonetheless, bottlenecks in the structure and process of PARS impact on patient health outcomes and hinder the programme’s uptake.

Conclusion: Exploring other referral mechanisms into PARS such as self or nurse-initiated referrals could improve the programme’s visibility and effectiveness.

Practice implications: Improved support, enhanced visibility of EPs, ongoing interactions between GPs and EPs and education about referral pathways would foster improved uptake, adherence and health outcomes for patients.

Item ID: 67950
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1873-5134
Keywords: Physical activity, Referral schemes, Mixed methods, Patients’ perception, Physical inactivity
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Copyright Information: (C) Elsevier
Date Deposited: 03 May 2021 23:51
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420702 Exercise physiology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2002 Evaluation of health and support services > 200206 Health system performance (incl. effectiveness of programs) @ 100%
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