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Promoting integration within the public health domain of physical activity promotion: Insights from a UK case study

Sandy Whitelaw (School of Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Glasgow, Dumfries, UK)
Chris Topping (DG Health and Wellbeing, Dumfries, UK)
Michele McCoy (NHS Dumfries and Galloway, Dumfries, UK)
Lindsay Turpie (School of Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Glasgow, Dumfries, UK)

Journal of Integrated Care

ISSN: 1476-9018

Article publication date: 3 July 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report and critically reflect on the methodological processes involved in a formal attempt to promote health and social integration in the rarely reported public health domain of physical activity promotion.

Design/methodology/approach

A quality improvement (QI) methodology was deployed, comprising three elements: a diagnostic tool that assessed strategic and practice positions; a half-day workshop that brought senior leaders together for to reflect this evidence; and a structured process that sought to generate proposals for future integrated action. A mixed-method evaluative approach was used, capturing insights of the integration processes via quantitative and qualitative data collection pre-event, in-event, immediate post-event and at six-month follow-up.

Findings

Insights suggested that despite some critical concerns, this QI process can be considered as robust, offering pointers to elements required to successfully promote integration in this domain, including the significance of leadership, the preparatory contribution of a diagnostic tool and position paper, the opportunities for active exchange and planning within a workshop situation and the initiation of a process of integrated work via tangible “pledges”.

Originality/value

The paper offers originality in two respects. Generally, it describes and reflects on the relationship between theoretical and empirical dimensions of a model of integration promotion. Specifically, in offering an account of integrative public health work across health service, local authority and third sector partners, it addressed an area that has received relatively limited prior attention.

Keywords

Citation

Whitelaw, S., Topping, C., McCoy, M. and Turpie, L. (2017), "Promoting integration within the public health domain of physical activity promotion: Insights from a UK case study", Journal of Integrated Care, Vol. 25 No. 3, pp. 174-185. https://doi.org/10.1108/JICA-01-2017-0002

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited