Health Behavior Change


  • Pip Mason, RGN, BSc(Econ), MSocSc, Nurse and Training Consultant, Aquarius, Birmingham, UK
  • Christopher Butler, BA, MBChB, DCH, FRCGP, MD, CCH, HonFFPHM, Professor of Primary Care Medicine, Cardiff University; Head of Dept. of Primary Care and Public Health and Vice Dean (Research), Cardiff University Clinical Epidemiology Interdisciplinary Research Group, Cardiff University Clinical Epidemiology Interdisciplinary Research Group

Engagingly written by experts with worldwide reputations in the field, Health Behavior Change presents an exciting method which can be used to helps patients change their behaviour in both hospital and community settings. The method is applicable to any behaviour, such as overeating, physical inactivity and smoking or with patients struggling with the consequences of chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease. Using brief, structured consultations with the client, the practitioner encourages the patient to take charge of decision-making concerning their health. It relies upon partnership between professional and patient rather than dominance of one over the other and is carried out in a spirit of negotiation rather than confrontation.

The text clearly outlines the fundamental principles behind the method while applying it to practice. Problems of resistance and lack of motivation are explored and practical strategies to manage them are suggested. The patient is at the centre throughout. Short case examples and dilemmas from clinical settings ground the method in the reality of practice.

View full description


A genuinely diverse range of health practitioners: primary care physicians, psychologists, psychiatrists, community nurses, health visitors, dieticians, dental hygienists, cardiac nurses, general and psychiatric nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, counsellors, health promoters, nutritionists, pharmacists, midwives, etc.


Book information

  • Published: April 2010
  • ISBN: 978-0-7020-4321-5

Table of Contents

1. Introduction, 2. Principles, 3. Getting started; rapport and agendas, 4. Assessing importance, confidence and readiness, 5. Exploring importance and building confidence, 6. Exchanging information, 7. Reducing resistance, 8. Ending the consultation, 9. Common clinical encounters, 10. Learning to practise this approach, 11. Calls from the consulting room, 12. Example of a consultation, Appendices: Patient Hand-outs