The Institute of Public Health (IPH) has launched a free online course to help healthcare professionals to support older people to have more physically active lives.
The new ‘Getting Active for Better Ageing’ course is available on IPH’s Public Health Matters app and desktop platform.
The digital learning resource is aimed at general practitioners, nurses, physiotherapists, and occupational therapists and all healthcare professionals that interact with older persons, as well as anyone interested in supporting older adults getting or staying active.
The course was developed following research findings, published by IPH in 2021, that identified the need for tailored education, training and resources to support healthcare professionals to promote physical activity in routine practice.
The research was carried out under the Generating Active Lives in Older People (GALOP) project and involved a survey of 350 healthcare professionals and 60+ interviews across the island of Ireland.
The health benefits of physical activity for older adults are well established. International guidelines recommend 150+ minutes of physical activity for older adults (≥65 years) per week.
The new ‘Getting Active for Better Ageing’ resource will set out key facts, information and guidelines, tools on how to support behaviour change in older adults, as well as, other essential resources.
IPH Director of Ageing Research & Development Professor Roger O’Sullivan said:
“The evidence is clear, physical activity plays an important role in our health at all stages of life, including in older age which is sometimes overlooked. This new free learning resource is available on our Public Health Matters platform and was developed as a practical programme to assist healthcare professionals to support older persons to be more physically active.”
The new Public Health Matters learning resource was launched at a webinar event focusing on public health and behaviour change and how healthcare professionals can encourage and support older people to be more physically active.
The webinar featured presentations from Professor Ryan Rhodes, University of Victoria, Canada, Professor Mark Tully from Ulster University, and Professor Suzanne McDonough from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, as well as a panel discussion about how behaviour change can be supported.
The Public Health Matters platform and app was developed to appeal to a wide ranging audience, from public health professionals and policy makers, to members of the public interested in population health issues.
The platform and app is regularly updated to include new podcast episodes, blogs, videos, and other content and resources relevant to public health.
Access the Public Health Matters desktop platform at https://learning.publichealth.ie/ or download the Public Health Matters app for free on the Google Play (Android) and iTunes store (Apple).
If you have a query about IPH’s new Public Health Matters platform and app please email firstname.lastname@example.org.