'Making every contact count': Evaluation of the impact of an intervention to train health and social care practitioners in skills to support health behaviour change

J Health Psychol. 2016 Feb;21(2):138-51. doi: 10.1177/1359105314523304. Epub 2014 Apr 8.


A total of 148 health and social care practitioners were trained in skills to support behaviour change: creating opportunities to discuss health behaviours, using open discovery questions, listening, reflecting and goal-setting. At three time points post-training, use of the skills was evaluated and compared with use of skills by untrained practitioners. Trained practitioners demonstrated significantly greater use of these client-centred skills to support behaviour change compared to their untrained peers up to 1 year post-training. Because it uses existing services to deliver support for behaviour change, this training intervention has the potential to improve public health at relatively low cost.

Keywords: Healthy Conversation Skills; behaviour change; evaluation; health and social care practitioners; intervention; public health; training.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Communication*
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Personnel / education*
  • Humans
  • Public Health