Publication date

Quality of weight-loss counseling by Dutch practice nurses in primary care: an observational study.

Dillen, S.M.E. van, Noordman, J., Dulmen, S. van, Hiddink, G.J. Quality of weight-loss counseling by Dutch practice nurses in primary care: an observational study. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition: 2015, 69(1), p. 73-78.
Download the PDF
To assess the quality of weight-loss counseling provided by Dutch primary care practice nurses (PNs) to overweight and obese patients including both PNs’ compliance with the Five A’s Model for behavioral counseling in primary care, and the use of different communication styles. In addition, relationships between PN/patient characteristics (including Five A’s) and communication styles will be examined.

In this observational study, 100 videotaped real-life consultations, collected in 2010/2011, were viewed using an observational checklist. Selection of consultations was based on PNs’ registration of patient’s complaint. The quality of weight-loss counseling was assessed by the Five A’s Model (sequence of evidence-based practice behaviors that are effective for helping patients to change health behaviors) and by PNs’ communication styles. Moreover, several PN and patient characteristics were registered. Descriptive statistics and logistic regression analysis were conducted with significance set at P<0.05.

PNs most frequently arranged follow-up, assessed the risk and current behavior and advised. However, they rarely assisted in addressing barriers and securing support. For weight or physical activity, most PNs used a motivational communication style. In discussions of nutrition, they mostly used an informational communication style. Moreover, PNs used a combination of communication styles. PN characteristics, including their behavior concerning the Five A’s, were stronger related to communication styles than patient characteristics.

PNs reasonably complied with the Five A’s Model. The quality of PNs’ weight-loss counseling might be increased by routinely providing assistance in addressing barriers and securing support, and routinely reaching agreement with collaboratively set goals.(aut. ref.)