A Cross-sectional Analysis of Motivation and Decision Making in Referrals to Lifestyle Interventions by Primary Care General Practitioners: A Call for Guidance

Adrie J. Bouma*, Paul van Wilgen, Frank Baarveld, Koen A. P. M. Lemmink, Ron L. Diercks, Arie Dijkstra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim. To explore (1) general practitioners' (GPs') motivations to refer to lifestyle interventions and to investigate the association between GPs' own lifestyle behaviors and their referral behavior and (2) patient indicators in the decision-making process of the GPs' referral to lifestyle interventions. Method. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 99 Dutch primary care GPs. Their motivation to refer was assessed by beliefs regarding lifestyle interventions. GPs' referral behaviors were assessed-considering referral and self-reported actual referral-as well as their own lifestyle behaviors (physical activity, dieting, being overweight). Decision making regarding referring patients to lifestyle interventions was assessed by imposed patient indicators, spontaneously suggested decisive patient indicators, and case-based referring (vignettes). Results. A substantial group of GPs was not motivated for referral to lifestyle interventions. GPs' referral behavior was significantly associated with their perceived subjective norm, behavioral control, and their own physical activity and diet. Most important, patient indicators in referral to lifestyle interventions were somatic indicators and patients' motivation for lifestyle interventions. Conclusions. GPs' motivation and referral behavior might be improved by providing them with tailored resources about evidence-based lifestyle interventions, with support from allied health professionals and with official guidelines for a more objective and systematic screening of patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-311
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of lifestyle medicine
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May-2019

Keywords

  • general practitioners
  • lifestyle interventions
  • refer
  • motivation
  • decision making
  • DISEASE
  • IMPLEMENTATION
  • EFFICACY
  • BEHAVIOR
  • HEALTH

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