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G42 A qualitative study exploring the attitudes of acute care children’s nurses on opportunistic health promotion in overweight children
  1. N Greenwood1,2,
  2. K Lewis1
  1. 1Health and Human Sciences, University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, UK
  2. 2Children’s Ward, Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust, Halifax, UK


Background Childhood obesity is a national and global issue within public health and continues to be a priority for the Department of Health. Childhood obesity poses a significant risk to psychological and physical health, both now and in the future. The NHS Future Forum set out a vision for all health care professionals to ‘make every contact count’ by delivering health promotion strategies.

Aim To explore the attitudes of children’s nurses about delivering health promotion to overweight children and their families during hospital admissions.

Method A qualitative study, based on semi-structured interviews, involving six children’s nurses from a UK based NHS funded hospital. Interviews were recorded and transcribed, from these transcripts thematic analysis was performed

Findings Six themes emerged from the data i) responsibility for delivery of health promotion, ii) sensitivity of the issue, iii) benefits of health promotion iv) influence of parents, v) skills of the nurses and vi) institutional support. The children’s nurses perceived their priority for the children in their care was the treatment of the child’s illness and that the acute care setting was not the appropriate environment to deliver health promotion. Length of experience and training did not affect the attitudes reported.

Conclusions Childhood obesity is a serious issue demanding action from health care services and the professionals involved. Nurse in acute care settings do not perceive health promoting in relation to obesity is within their scope of practice. Further research is required to facilitate the development of ethical policies on the delivery of health promotion strategies within the acute care setting.

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