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Perceptions of the Exercise Is Medicine Initiative in a Geographically Defined Deep South Population

Allison Nooe, MS, Rita Morgan, FNP-BC, M. Allison Ford, PhD, Paul D. Loprinzi, PhD
Volume: 109 Issue: 12 December, 2016

Abstract:

Objectives: To examine the population’s perceptions of the Exercise Is Medicine (EiM) initiative, as well as factors that influence the accurate perception of the EiM.

Methods: Participants (N = 179; 24 primary care advanced-level practitioners, 79 exercise science students, and 76 people from the general population) residing in Oxford, Mississippi, were surveyed for this study.

Results: Only 34.7% of advanced-care practitioners, 20.2% of students, and 19.4% of the general population defined the term medicine as having treatment and preventive aspects. Awareness of the EiM was reported as follows: advanced-care practitioners, 25.0%; students, 20.2%; and the general population, 14.2%. In total, 45.0% of advanced-care practitioners, 34.7% of students, and 32.9% of the general population defined the EiM as having treatment and preventive aspects; 10.0%, 10.1%, and 31.4% of advanced-care practitioners, students, and general population, respectively, viewed the EiM as being preventive only. Women had a 56% reduced odds of having an accurate perception of the EiM (odds ratio 0.44, P = 0.05). When compared with those perceiving their health as excellent/very good, those perceiving their health as good or worse had a sixfold increased odds of having an accurate perception of the EiM (odds ratio 6.08, P = 0.003).

Conclusions: On average, all of the subpopulations were unaware of the initiative and had misguided perceptions of the EiM. Sex and health status were associated with accurate perceptions of the initiative. Clinical implications of these findings are discussed herein.

 

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