The process of changing health risk behaviors: an Oregon rural clinic experience.

Jeanne M. Bowden, Muriel P. Shaul, Jill A. Bennett

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Scopus citations


    PURPOSE: A counseling intervention was conducted by nurse practitioners (NPs) at a rural clinic in Oregon. The intervention was designed to help individuals change health risk behaviors. Three focus groups were conducted to aid in understanding the barriers to changing health behaviors and to identify resources that rural individuals needed to succeed in behavior change. DATA SOURCES: Quantitative data were collected using appraisal forms that were specific to five behaviors. Qualitative data were from written comments submitted by focus group participants in answer to questions sent prior to each meeting and from written summaries of focus group meetings submitted by the focus group leader. CONCLUSIONS: Most participants were not successful in changing their health behaviors. The issues raised in the focus group discussions provide an overview of the barriers to health behavior change as perceived by a group of adults in a rural environment. Both individual lack of will and the rural community environment were barriers to adopting new health behaviors. IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: NPs in rural health care clinics could provide important support for individuals attempting to adopt new health behaviors. Specific suggestions from focus group participants included discussing risky behaviors more often, forming support groups that do not charge a fee, and developing a peer-mentoring program.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)411-417
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
    Issue number9
    StatePublished - Sep 2004

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Nursing(all)


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