Participants' perspectives of a multi-component, group-based weight loss programme supplement for cardiac rehabilitation: A qualitative study

Authors

  • Robyn Gallagher RN PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Associate Professor, Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Technology, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Ann Kirkness RN,

    1. Clinical Nurse Consultant Cardiac Rehabilitation, North Shore Cardiovascular Education Centre, Ryde and North Shore Hospitals, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Elizabeth Armari BMedSc,

    1. Research Assistant, Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Technology, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Patricia M Davidson RN BA MEd PhD

    1. Professor of Cardiovascular and Chronic Care, Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, University of Technology, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    2. Cardiovascular and Chronic Care Centre, University of Technology, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    3. Professor of Cardiovascular Nursing Research, St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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Robyn Gallagher, Faculty of Nursing Midwifery and Health, University of Technology Sydney, PO Box 123 Broadway, NSW 2007, Australia. Email: robyn.gallagher@uts.edu.au

Abstract

Gallagher R, Kirkness A, Armari E, Davidson PM. International Journal of Nursing Practice 2012; 18: 28–35

Participants' perspectives of a multi-component, group-based weight loss programme supplement for cardiac rehabilitation: A qualitative study

Addressing overweight and obesity in people with cardiovascular risk factors is an important aspect of cardiac rehabilitation, but minimal implementation of targeted strategies has occurred. The aim of this study was to describe participants' perspectives of a multi-component, group-based weight loss supplement to cardiac rehabilitation programmes. Four focus groups of participants completing the intervention (n = 16) and maintenance phases (n = 19) of the Healthy Eating and Exercise Lifestyle Program (HEELP) were conducted. Interviews were transcribed and thematically analyzed using an inductive process. The overall theme of participants' responses was that HEELP helped them reprogramme their lifestyle behaviours to achieve weight loss. The programme was unique compared with other weight loss programmes because it was delivered and developed by familiar and expert health professionals who tailored the programme to participants' health status. Themes included the process of recognizing and deciding to make a commitment to managing their weight problem and feeling supported by the group and the staff to do this. Participants valued the group-based structure and the specific tools used in the programme. The programme content and structure provides a framework for the development of supplemental programmes for overweight and obese people at high cardiovascular risk.

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