What is health coaching?

Health coaching is helping people gain the knowledge, skills, tools and confidence to become active participants in their care so that they can reach their self-identified health goals.

By providing clinicians, (and peer coaches) with new skills that help people identify what’s most important to them, and tapping into their own internal motivation, evidence shows health coaching can also address health inequalities, improve health behaviours including medication compliance and reduce avoidable admissions.

What is health coaching Read Chapter 2 from the resource guide >

What is the evidence?

Why is health coaching vital for patients and the NHS? Read chapter 1 of the resource guide >
What do systematic reviews tell us? Read Ruth Q Wolever’s analysis >

Other conversations

The principles and techniques of health coaching can support other conversations including better care planning and shared decision making.

What is care and support planning?
Read Chapter 9 from the resource guide >

What is shared decision making?
Read Chapter 10 from the resource guide >

"I feel that ideally all health care professionals should have access to this type of training."

General Practitioner

Health coach training

There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that health professional's education have not kept pace with the complexity of system and population needs, and that time-poor clinicians need new communication skills based on the science of behaviour change.

Training in health coaching includes adoption of principles and practice from psychology, behaviour change science and performance coaching integrated with clinical skills.

What is health coaching training? Read Chapter 3 from the resource guide >

Good health coaching training is an experiential process with opportunities to test application of learning in the workplace. Evidence shows a minimum of 2 days training is required for effective mind-set and skill acquisition. Train the trainer models can effectively develop an internal training resource for organisations.

How can we commission health coaching? Read chapter 4 of the resource guide >

How can we commission health coach training for clinicians? Download from HEE >

"My conversations are different. I ask patients what their aims are. I used to say “this is what I’m going to do. ” Now I’m a facilitator asking “what can you do?” and “how can you change it?” This has enabled me to get onto the clinical stuff much quicker."


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