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Agricultural exposure for healthcare professionals fosters holistic, sustainable healthcare: Survey findings from a pilot workshop

Yeung, Kelda, Abramovich, Natasha, Jaffee, Ally, Broadley, Iain, Seage, Catherine Heidi, Hassoulas, Athanasios ORCID:, Bold, Justine and Vuolo, Francesca 2023. Agricultural exposure for healthcare professionals fosters holistic, sustainable healthcare: Survey findings from a pilot workshop. Presented at: The 9th International Summit on Nutrition and Health, Online, 15 July 2023.

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Background: Emerging epidemics, ageing populations, and the climate crisis are dramatically increasing global healthcare burdens. Healthcare systems require sustainable reform by implementing lifestyle medicine downstream, alongside upstream nutritional prevention. Healthcare professionals (HCPs), given their ubiquity and respected status, offer an effective platform to foster this reform, yet training workshops investing in sustainable healthcare remain limited. Objectives: To gather participants’ current perceptions on the role of HCPs in promoting nutrition and sustainability; To equip HCPs with knowledge of sustainable diets and food production; and To highlight the benefits of lifestyle medicine. Methods: We developed a two-day agriculture-oriented virtual workshop involving 36 HCPs. We conducted online surveys before and after the workshop to assess its impact on the knowledge and perceptions of HCPs. We quantified workshop impact by encoding Likert scale responses on a scale of 1 to 5. We calculated mean scores and the change in mean scores before and after the workshop, then performed two-tailed t-tests at 95% confidence interval. Results: We received 36 responses pre-workshop and 15 post-workshop. At baseline, participants expressed positive perceptions of lifestyle medicine and felt it was important for HCPs to advocate for sustainability and optimal nutrition. Following the workshop, participants became significantly more confident in their knowledge of food production and sustainable practices. Participants gained significant confidence in their ability to advise patients on nutritious, sustainable diets. Conclusions: This pilot workshop significantly increased participants’ confidence and knowledge where lacking and maintained similar perceptions and level of knowledge in areas where participants already scored highly before the workshop. Major limitations include loss-to-follow-up and non- representative sampling bias. Nevertheless, this workshop’s positive impact reflects its potential to engage and influence diverse audiences. Such promising results support further development of this workshop. Scaling up the workshop across settings would help validate workshop effectiveness and generalisability.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Medicine
Subjects: R Medicine > RZ Other systems of medicine
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 May 2024
Date of Acceptance: 15 July 2023
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2024 14:00

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