Barriers and facilitators among health professionals in primary care to prevention of cardiometabolic diseases: A systematic review

Per Wändell, Anne-Karien de Waard, Martin Holzmann, Carl Gornitzki, Christos Lionis, Niek de Wit, Jens Søndergaard, Anders Sønderlund, Norbert Kral, Bohumil Seifert, Joke Korevaar, Francois Schellevis, Axel Carlsson

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The aim of this study is to identify potential facilitators and barriers for health care professionals to undertake selective prevention of cardiometabolic diseases (CMD) in primary health care. We developed a search string for Medline, Embase, Cinahl and PubMed. We also screened reference lists of relevant articles to retain barriers and facilitators for prevention of CMD. We found 19 qualitative studies, 7 quantitative studies and 2 mixed qualitative and quantitative studies. In terms of five overarching categories, the most frequently reported barriers and facilitators were as follows: Structural (barriers: time restraints, ineffective counselling and interventions, insufficient reimbursement and problems with guidelines; facilitators: feasible and effective counselling and interventions, sufficient assistance and support, adequate referral, and identification of obstacles), Organizational (barriers: general organizational problems, role of practice, insufficient IT support, communication problems within health teams and lack of support services, role of staff, lack of suitable appointment times; facilitators: structured practice, IT support, flexibility of counselling, sufficient logistic/practical support and cooperation with allied health staff/community resources, responsibility to offer and importance of prevention), Professional (barriers: insufficient counselling skills, lack of knowledge and of experience; facilitators: sufficient training, effective in motivating patients), Patient-related factors (barriers: low adherence, causes problems for patients; facilitators: strong GP-patient relationship, appreciation from patients), and Attitudinal (barriers: negative attitudes to prevention; facilitators: positive attitudes of importance of prevention). We identified several frequently reported barriers and facilitators for prevention of CMD, which may be used in designing future implementation and intervention studies.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFamily Practice
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)383-398
Publication statusPublished - 23. Jul 2018


  • Coronary heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • General practitioner
  • Health check
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Selective prevention
  • Stroke
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Preventive Health Services/methods
  • Cardiovascular Diseases/prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Metabolic Diseases/prevention & control
  • Health Personnel
  • Primary Health Care
  • Qualitative Research


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