Marta Marques is a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow at Trinity College Dublin. She holds a PhD in Health Psychology and is a chartered clinical psychologist. Marta has international research experience in behaviour change and is also affiliated with the Centre for Behaviour Change, University College London. Marta lends her expertise to interdisciplinary work within the consortium.

Train4health is a unique international research initiative aiming to support self-management of chronic diseases through a training package for healthcare professionals.

Promoting behaviour change is essential for the management of chronic diseases and health care professionals, such as nurses, pharmacists and exercise physiologists, are expected to help patients in this process. However, there are two key challenges to a scalable implementation of behaviour change strategies in consultations for self- management. The first one is that these professionals often don’t have the skills, training and resources necessary to promote health behaviour change.

Secondly, there is a lack of standardized frameworks that can specify which behaviour change techniques are necessary to promote sustained self-management of chronic disease and what are the competencies needed to implement them in routine practice.

Train4Health brilliantly addresses these two challenges by developing a standardised behaviour change competences framework for nursing, pharmacists and sport science students, using a rigorous behavioural-science approach. The framework is supported by evidence-based behaviour change techniques, selected through literature synthesis and expert feedback, and includes a large international Delphi consensus exercise.

This project will not only advance health behaviour change science but mainly bring exciting new opportunities to implement standardised training and practice frameworks that can inform current guidelines for self-management of chronic diseases.