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General Practitioners’ Experiences of Providing Lifestyle Advice to Patients with Depression: A Qualitative Focus Group Study

Astaire, E, Jennings, L, Khundakar, M, Silverio, SA and Flynn, A (2024) General Practitioners’ Experiences of Providing Lifestyle Advice to Patients with Depression: A Qualitative Focus Group Study. PLoS One, 19 (3). e0299934. ISSN 1932-6203

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Objective: Depression is an increasingly common mental health disorder in the UK, managed predominantly in the community by GPs. Emerging evidence suggests lifestyle medicine is a key component in the management of depression. We aimed to explore GPs’ experiences, attitudes, and challenges to providing lifestyle advice to patients with depression. Method: Focus groups were conducted virtually with UK GPs (May-July 2022). A topic guide facilitated the discussion and included questions on experiences, current practices, competence, challenges, and service provision. Data were analysed using template analysis. Results: ‘Supporting Effective Conversations’; ‘Willing, but Blocked from Establishing Relational Care’; ‘Working Towards Patient Empowerment’; and ‘Control Over the Prognosis’ were all elements of how individualised lifestyle advice was key to the management of depression. Establishing a doctor-patient relationship by building trust and rapport was fundamental to having effective conversations about lifestyle behaviours. Empowering patients to make positive lifestyle changes required tailoring advice using a patient-centred approach. Confidence varied across participants, depending on education, experience, type of patient, and severity of depression. Conclusions: GPs play an important role in managing depression using lifestyle medicine and a patient-centred approach. Organisational and educational changes are necessary to facilitate GPs in providing optimal care to patients with depression.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Depression; Primary Care; General Practitioner; Family Doctor; Lifestyle Medicine; Humans; Focus Groups; Attitude of Health Personnel; Depression; Physician-Patient Relations; Life Style; Qualitative Research; General Practitioners; Humans; General Practitioners; Focus Groups; Depression; Physician-Patient Relations; Attitude of Health Personnel; Qualitative Research; Life Style; General Science & Technology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Divisions: Psychology (from Sep 2019)
Publisher: Public Library of Science
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 10 May 2024 08:56
Last Modified: 10 May 2024 09:00
DOI or ID number: 10.1371/journal.pone.0299934
Editors: White, S
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/23211
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