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Undergraduate examination and assessment of knowledge and skills is crucial in capacity planning for the future healthcare workforce in physical activity interventions
  1. Ann Bernadette Gates1,2,
  2. Michelle Grace Swainson3,
  3. Fiona Moffatt4,
  4. Roger Kerry5,
  5. George S Metsios6,
  6. Ian Ritchie7
  1. 1 School of Health Sciences, The University of Nottingham, Derby, UK
  2. 2 CEO, Exercise-Works, Derby, UK
  3. 3 Lancaster Medical School, Lancaster University, Lancaster, Lancashire, UK
  4. 4 Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK
  5. 5 University of Nottingham, Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Sciences Clinical Sciences Building City Hospital Campus, Nottingham, UK
  6. 6 FEHW, University of Wolverhampton, Walsall, UK
  7. 7 Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Ann Bernadette Gates, School of Health Sciences, The University of Nottingham, Derby DE221DA, UK; annbgates{at}

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The WHO Global Action Plan on Physical Activity (GAPPA) (#GAPPA)1 highlights the importance of a systems-wide approach to achieving the global goals for reducing physical inactivity at the national, community, individual and patient levels. Within this scope, objective 1.4 of that plan details the vision and strategy for capacity planning for the health workforce and the collaborations required for success. This objective is closely linked to existing global and national efforts to enable the future healthcare professional (HCP) workforce to have the capability and competencies to make every contact count for physical activity support and advice (via brief interventions). A significant part of these goals is to enable the future and current healthcare workforce to meet the challenges of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), sustainable development goals (SDGs) and person-centred healthcare, exemplars of which have been identified in most European countries.2 3 Indeed, a physical activity resource focused approach in undergraduate healthcare courses such as medicine, nursing and allied health is critical in higher education institutes’ (HEIs) strategies2 4 5 to deliver on these directives.

Case for examining and assessing physical activity: knowledge, competencies, capabilities and confidence

Reaching the potential of knowledge and skill acquisition in physical activity interventions is a challenge in practice.6–8 Yet we know that HCP practice influences healthcare behaviours in patients: this is the basis of ‘making every contact count’ …

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  • Twitter @exerciseworks, @mgswainson, @fimo18, @GeorgeMetsios

  • Contributors ABG, MGS, FM, GSM were the main authors. FM, RK and IR provided editorial review and strategic advice for the editorial content and style.

  • Funding ABG and IR were previously commissioned and funded by PHE and Sport England in 2017–2018. GSM and ABG are recipients of an Erasmus+Collaborative Partnership Grant 2019-2022.

  • Competing interests ABG is a member of the World Heart Federation, Emerging Leaders Programme; Honorary Associate Professor, The University of Nottingham; Honorary Visiting Professor, Plymouth Marjon University; CEO of Exercise-Works! MGS has contributed to the 2018/2019 update of Movement for Movement resources. FM is an assistant professor in the School of Health Sciences, University of Nottingham, and a member of the Swim England Wellbeing Committee. RK is an associate professor in the School of Health Sciences, University of Nottingham. GSM has no relevant affiliations or financial involvement with any organisation or entity with a financial interest in or financial conflict with the subject matter or materials discussed in the manuscript. This includes employment, consultancies, honoraria, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, or patents received or pending, or royalties. GSM and ABG are recipients of an Erasmus+Grant 2019. IR is a retired trauma and orthopaedic surgeon and past president of RCSEd, Chair of Scottish Government Health and Social Care Physical Activity Delivery Group.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.