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Obes Facts. 2013;6(1):91-102. doi: 10.1159/000348714. Epub 2013 Mar 2.

Are anti-stigma films a useful strategy for reducing weight bias among trainee healthcare professionals? Results of a pilot randomized control trial.

Author information

1
Division of Nutritional Sciences, School of Biosciences, The University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Loughborough, UK. judy.swift@nottingham.ac.uk

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Weight bias is an important clinical issue that the educators of tomorrow's healthcare professionals cannot afford to ignore. This study, therefore, aimed to pilot a randomized controlled trial of the effects of educational films designed to reduce weight stigmatization toward obese patients on trainee dietitians' and doctors' attitudes.

METHODS:

A pre-post experimental design with a 6-week follow-up, which consisted of an intervention group (n = 22) and a control group (n = 21), was conducted to assess the efficacy of brief anti-stigma films in reducing weight bias, and to test whether future, larger-scale studies among trainee healthcare professionals are feasible.

RESULTS:

Participants at baseline demonstrated weight bias, on both implicit and explicit attitude measures, as well as strong beliefs that obesity is under a person's control. The intervention films significantly improved explicit attitudes and beliefs toward obese people, and participant evaluation was very positive. The intervention did not significantly improve implicit anti-fat bias.

CONCLUSION:

The current study suggests both that it is possible to conduct a substantive trial of the effects of educational films designed to reduce weight stigma on a larger cohort of trainee healthcare professionals, and that brief educational interventions may be effective in reducing stigmatizing attitudes in this population.

PMID:
23466551
DOI:
10.1159/000348714
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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