Adapted ‘healthmatters program’: promoting healthy lifestyles in individuals with an intellectual disability

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Aim: Our goal was to test the efficacy of an adapted health promotionintervention entitled ‘HealthMatters Program’ (originally developed by Marks etal., 2013) on health related outcomes for people with intellectual disabilities (ID),and on staffs’ knowledge and attitudes in supporting this population to adopt ahealthy lifestyle. This study also explored facilitators and barriers to engagementin health promotion activities. Method: A multiphase mixed methods approachwas used. A pre-post single design tested the outcomes of the programme on 28staff (attitudes and nutrition knowledge) and 46 individuals with ID (weight,nutrition knowledge, health behaviour, nutrition self-efficacy and socialsupports). These outcomes were assessed pre-intervention, and 3 and 6 monthspost-intervention. Following this the barriers and facilitators to implementing theprogramme were explored within focus groups. Results: Nutritional knowledgeoutcomes improved significantly for staff and people with ID. The focus groupsfound that consistent commitment from staff, managers and individuals with IDwas critical to ensuring successful application of knowledge acquired from theprogramme in order to positively change health knowledge and behaviours.Conclusion: Organisational, staff and service user buy in influenced successfulimplementation of the adapted ‘HealthMatters Program’ and adherence tohealthy lifestyles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)302
JournalJournal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Jul 2014


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