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Telephone outreach by community workers to improve uptake of NHS Health Checks in more deprived localities and minority ethnic groups: a qualitative investigation of implementation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article numberfdz063
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Public Health (United Kingdom)
Early online date12 Jun 2019
DateAccepted/In press - 9 May 2019
DateE-pub ahead of print (current) - 12 Jun 2019


Background: NHS Health Checks is a national cardiovascular risk assessment and management programme in England. To improve equity of uptake in more deprived, and Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities, a novel telephone outreach intervention was developed. The outreach call included an invitation to an NHS Health Check appointment, lifestyle questions, and signposting to lifestyle services. We examined the experiences of staff delivering the intervention.
Methods: Thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews with 10 community Telephone Outreach Workers (TOWs) making outreach calls, and 5 Primary Care Practice (PCP) staff they liaised with. Normalisation Process Theory was used to examine intervention implementation.
Results: Telephone outreach was perceived as effective in engaging patients in NHS Health Checks and could reduce related administration burdens on PCPs. Successful implementation was dependent on support from participating PCPs, and tensions between the intervention and other PCP priorities were identified. Some PCP staff lacked clarity regarding the intervention aim and this could reduce the potential to capitalise on TOWs’ specialist skills.
Conclusions: To maximise the potential of telephone outreach to impact equity, purposeful recruitment and training of TOWs is vital, along with support and integration of TOWs, and the telephone outreach intervention, in participating PCPs.

    Research areas

  • NHS Health Checks, Telephone Outreach, Deprivation, Ethnicity, Normalisation Process theory, Implementation, Qualitative



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    Embargo ends: 12/06/20

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