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GP practices ‘should employ personal trainers’, says campaign group

GP surgeries should employ fitness trainers to help build physical activity into their patients’ care plans, exercise campaigners say.

The call is one of several key recommendations outlined in a report launched by ukactive, a non-profit organisation that is headed up by Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and links up experts and ‘strategic partners’ involved in the ‘active lifestyle sector’ - including the gym group Fitness First and the drinks corporation Coca Cola. 

The report says a ‘healthy population is essential to a thriving productive economy that is competitive in the global race’ and calls for an ‘industrial-scale level of cooperation between the physical activity sector and a government that unites the support of a broad range of partners such as major charities and commercial brands’.

Among recommendations aimed specifically at the NHS, it calls for the integration of physical activity with clinical care and says that ‘every GP surgery should have access to a trained physical-activity professional, equipped to deliver an evidence-based physical activity behavioural intervention’.

It adds: ‘Their implementation should be supported by local authorities and CCGs to build bridges and become a recognised part of local delivery services both within primary care and beyond.’

The report also calls for disabled people to ‘have access to a named physical activity behaviour change intervention at their local GP surgery, utilising evidence-based techniques like motivational interviewing, and involving disabled people as peer mentors and role models in its design and delivery’.

Professor Mike Pringle, president of the RCGP, said the initiatives outlined by ukactive could ‘go a long way to raising awareness of the importance of physical activity – and support GPs and our teams to deliver services that could make a real difference to our patients’ lives’.

He added that ‘encouraging our patients to be more active is a key factor in ensuring a sustainable NHS for the future’, but said the Government should ‘invest more in general practice – including creating thousands more GPs – so that we can continue to deliver the care our patients need and deserve’.


Readers' comments (22)

  • Where do these people come from????

    We can't afford to keep nurses and doctors let alone personal trainers!!!

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  • FFS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • I agree, it would be lovely to be able to employ a personal trainer to help with some of my more....resistant mobilisers.

    Would the health secretary please now make sure that he provides adequate increased resources to allow me to employ one?

    Many thanks.

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  • ha ha ha ha ha. We cant employ GPs!

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  • Cue the RCGP response. "GP's are best placed to provide personal trainers for the whole of their population out of their own pocket and in the interest of patient care alone, this must happen in every surgery from tomorrow. I would urge the CQC to look into any practice that does not provide this. I back NICE to implement this on the next guidelines, the government to encourage all and sundry to see their GP for a full health check up before seeing the personal trainer who will be on hand to ensure that no damage is done. If the MDO's decide to increase their premiums by 1000% thats fine. Its for patient care. "

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  • even physical trainers won't be able to motivate the lazy fat patients.

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  • "Every GP surgery should have access to a pastry chef"

    A report today by the Association of Master Bakers found that.....


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  • GP practices ‘should go private and *** the NHS contract’, says this GP

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  • 2.44 you beat me to it I was going to suggest massage therapist.

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  • or just take the car keys off our patients and make them walk for a few days.

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