Implementation of recommended type 2 diabetes care for people with severe mental illness - a qualitative exploration with healthcare professionals
Background: The purpose of this study was to explore the barriers and facilitators healthcare professionals experience when managing type 2 diabetes in people with severe mental illness (SMI). Methods: A qualitative semi-structured interview approach was employed. Questions were structured according to the Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF), which outlines 14 domains that can act as barriers and facilitators to changing behaviour. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. The data were coded according to the 14 domains of the TDF, belief statements were created within each domain and the most relevant belief statements within each domain identified through a consensus approach. Analyses were conducted by two researchers, and discrepancies agreed with a third researcher. Results: Sixteen healthcare professionals, from a range of services, involved in the care of people with type 2 diabetes and SMI took part in an interview. Inter-rater reliability for each of the domains varied (25 %-74 %). All fourteen domains were deemed relevant, with 42 specific beliefs identified as important to the target behaviour. Participants identified having relevant knowledge and skills for diabetes management, prioritising this area of health, and reviewing health behaviours to develop action plans, as particularly important. At an organisational level, integrated care provision and shared information technology (IT) services between mental health and physical services, and clearly defined roles and responsibilities for the different professions, with designated time to undertake the work were identified as crucial. Conclusions: The findings highlight that healthcare professionals' experience a range of barriers and enablers when attempting to manage type 2 diabetes in people with SMI. These include organisational factors and individual beliefs, suggesting that interventions need to be targeted at both an organisation and individual level in order to change behaviour. Further work is needed to model these relationships in a larger sample of participants in line with the MRC guidance for developing complex interventions.