Title: Examining service participation and outcomes from a population-level telephone-coaching service for people with a mental health condition.
Author(s): Tegan Bradley, Kate Bartlem, Kim Colyvas, Paula Wye, Elizabeth Campbell, Kate Reid, Jenny Bowman PhD
Introduction: Population-level telephone coaching services provide accessible behaviour change support for modifiable health risk behaviours. The NSW Get Healthy Service® is a free telephone-based coaching service in Australia, supporting improvements in healthy eating, physical activity and achieving or maintaining a healthy weight. This study aimed to examine the engagement and immediate post-program outcomes of the NSW Get Healthy Service® for participants with a mental health condition enrolled in a 6 month coaching program in terms of program retention and changes in health measures at program completion.
Methods: Secondary data analysis was conducted on service data collected at program intake and completion for individuals who enrolled in a coaching program between January 2018 and October 2019 (n=5,629).
Results and findings: 33% of coaching participants identified as having had a significant mental health condition that required treatment from a health professional. Approximately a third of participants with a mental health condition completed a coaching program, with the majority of completers utilising the full 10-13 calls available as a part of the coaching program. Participants with a mental health condition made significant positive changes to their daily fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity (walking and moderate), weight and BMI, but not to waist circumference or vigorous physical activity.
Discussion: The NSW Get Healthy Service® is an effective means of providing behaviour change support for people with a mental health condition. Further research should consider means of improving retention rates.