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  • Thinner nurses have less empathy for overweight patients

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
    Friday, June 11, 2004 11:14 am Email this article
    EMPATHY FOR OVERWEIGHT PATIENTS seems to go hand-in-hand with a nurse's own body weight. A recent study found thinner nurses are more likely than overweight nurses to believe that being overweight is preventable.

    Although the nurses were confident in their ability to give advice to obese patients, their expectation for patients to actually lose weight was low.

    They also tended to believe that failure to lose weight was the patient’s fault, not due to their advice.

    Thinner nurses were also less likely to advice patients to use a calorie controlled diet and more likely to suggest eating less in general.

    The study was based on a questionnaire completed by 586 practice nurses.


    Hoppe R, Ogden J. Practice nurses’ beliefs about obesity and weight related interventions in primary care. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, 1997 Feb, 21(2):141-6.

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