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New partnership encourages Scots to move more

This news post is about 1 year old

Web resource draws on both clinical and patient experience to create behaviour change

A coalition of 19 leading health charities have endorsed a resource that will help healthcare professionals integrate physical activity conversations into routine clinical care.

Movement for Health (MFH) - a group of charities including SAMH, Age Scotland, and Paths for All – is working with the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) to advocate for use of its Moving Medicine resource which provides health care professionals with the knowledge, skills and confidence to talk to patients about physical activity.

The web resource draws on both clinical and patient experience to create behaviour change for people living with long term conditions. It is free to access and already widely used across England.

MFH has endorsed the resource in the hope it can help improve the resilience of Scotland’s people, communities and NHS while directly aligning to its key aim of making it easier for people with a long term health condition to be more active.

Dr Emma Lunan, chair of Movement for Health, said: “It’s quite simple – Scotland needs to move more to boost the nation’s health and happiness. 

“As a coalition of charities, we are always eager to engage with initiatives supporting and promoting life changing physical activity. It can be transformative for many with long-term conditions.

“Receiving further expertise and resource from Moving Medicine is extremely welcomed and will prove a vital tool post-pandemic to improve the physical, social and mental health of the country.

“MFH exists to promote physical activity for the prevention and management of long term conditions and has been at the forefront championing a way forward for the past four years.

“The Moving Medicine web tool has already had success in paving the way for healthcare professionals to feel confident and have better conversations around physical activity and ultimately make referrals for exercise. We encourage those who work within a healthcare setting to seek out and use this resource as it can play such an important role in supporting those with Long Term Conditions to become more active.

“This has never been more important so we are delighted to be working together.”

The CMOs’* Physical Activity Guidelines state that for good physical and mental health, adults should aim to be physically active every day. This can be anything from a short walk to the shop or a 30-minute session in the gym – any activity is better than none alongside reducing sedentary behaviour.

Moving Medicine is led by the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM), delivered in partnership with the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, Sport England and the National Lottery - with the aim of improving physical activity conversations across healthcare and support the routine delivery of physical activity for all.

The resource was developed in Scotland through a partnership between FSEM, Sportscotland and Public Health Scotland. This partnership also included the development of the resources for children and young people.

Natasha Jones, FSEM President and Clinical Director of Moving Medicine, said: “The Movement for Health coalition brings together charities and organisations that share FSEM’s vision of improving the health of the nation through physical activity.

“We are delighted to be working with the coalition to help us spread the word and encourage everyone in healthcare to have better conversations about physical activity”

Moving Medicine has worked with more than 2,000 clinicians, academics and patient experts to design the resource for a wide range of conditions and life stages, such as cancer, diabetes, pregnancy, and menopause.

In total, Moving Medicine offers resources covering 21 adult conditions and life stages, 6 childhood conditions and 6 conditions affecting young people. These paediatric resources were jointly co-funded Public Health Scotland and sportscotland.

Flora Jackson, Health Improvement Manager at Public Health Scotland, said: “We’re pleased to continue to work with Paths for All to support the Movement for Health Coalition and welcome their voice, providing leadership and advocacy for physical activity and long-term conditions.  

Moving Medicine provides a simple guide on how to raise the issue of physical activity in as little as 30 seconds and we echo the call for more health professionals to do so.”

Regular physical activity provides a range of physical and mental health and social benefits, including: reducing the risk of many long-term conditions, helping manage existing conditions, ensuring good musculoskeletal health, developing and maintaining physical and mental function and independence, supporting social inclusion, helping maintain a healthy weight and reducing inequalities for people with long-term condition.