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The perceived impact of the National Health Service on personalised nutrition service delivery among the UK public

  • Rosalind Fallaize (a1), Anna L. Macready (a1), Laurie T. Butler (a2), Judi A. Ellis (a2), Aleksandra Berezowska (a3), Arnout R. H. Fischer (a3), Marianne C. Walsh (a4), Caroline Gallagher (a4), Barbara J. Stewart-Knox (a5), Sharon Kuznesof (a6), Lynn J. Frewer (a6), Mike J. Gibney (a4) and Julie A. Lovegrove (a1)...

Abstract

Personalised nutrition (PN) has the potential to reduce disease risk and optimise health and performance. Although previous research has shown good acceptance of the concept of PN in the UK, preferences regarding the delivery of a PN service (e.g. online v. face-to-face) are not fully understood. It is anticipated that the presence of a free at point of delivery healthcare system, the National Health Service (NHS), in the UK may have an impact on end-user preferences for deliverances. To determine this, supplementary analysis of qualitative data obtained from focus group discussions on PN service delivery, collected as part of the Food4Me project in the UK and Ireland, was undertaken. Irish data provided comparative analysis of a healthcare system that is not provided free of charge at the point of delivery to the entire population. Analyses were conducted using the ‘framework approach’ described by Rabiee (Focus-group interview and data analysis. Proc Nutr Soc 63, 655-660). There was a preference for services to be led by the government and delivered face-to-face, which was perceived to increase trust and transparency, and add value. Both countries associated paying for nutritional advice with increased commitment and motivation to follow guidelines. Contrary to Ireland, however, and despite the perceived benefit of paying, UK discussants still expected PN services to be delivered free of charge by the NHS. Consideration of this unique challenge of free healthcare that is embedded in the NHS culture will be crucial when introducing PN to the UK.

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Copyright

This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Corresponding author

* Corresponding author: Professor J. A. Lovegrove, email j.a.lovegrove@reading.ac.uk

References

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