Health Care Providers

Making a Difference in Your Health Care Setting

One of the most important decisions your patients will make regarding their overall health is to incorporate regular physical activity (PA) into their lives. Your encouragement can be a powerful influence in this decision. The EIM Summary Sheet provides a quick overview of Exercise is Medicine® and the recommended physical activity guidelines. EIM has developed a step-by-step Health Care Providers' Action Guide to help you integrate physical activity into your practice.  The Rx for Health series of patient handouts provides supporting information to patients with various medical conditions and for sedentary adults, older adults, teens and children.

We understand that your time is limited, and every minute counts. The HCP Action Guide provides an implementation framework to help you utilize all the members of your clinical team to:

  1. assess the current PA level of your patient;
  2. provide brief advice and/or write an exercise prescription
  3. refer your patient to physical activity resources (programs, places, professionals, or self-directed resources).

To help you get started, here are additional resources and answers to frequently asked questions:

Know the basic national physical activity recommendations and share these with your patients. At minimum, encourage your patients to decrease their sedentary time and integrate short periods of activity over the course of a day (walking, standing, any and all movement, etc). Provide the EIM "Sit Less. Move More." handout. Every active minute counts!

Have your medical assistant assess physical activity using the Physical Activity Vital Sign (PAVS) before you enter the exam room. 2 questions, simple math, and bam!
Most patients can begin light to moderate physical activity without screening. In fact, their health will be negatively affected if they remain inactive! The ACSM screening algorithm can help guide your decision-making.
Moderate-intensity physical activity (such as a 30-60 minute brisk walk) has been shown to have positive effects on immune function, particularly for those over age 65, as well as improve immune responses to vaccination. Encourage patients to be active while following social distancing recommendations. Provide EIM handouts for adults and parents with children.
Use the ACSM screening algorithm to identify patients who may need further work-up prior to initiating moderate to vigorous physical activity.
See this brief summary entitled "Exercise is Medicine: The Miracle Drug". Use the Rx for Health series for patients with certain medical conditions or age groups.
Involve every member of your team to make it easier for everyone - you included! See how.
The EIM Rx form can be filled out and given to the patient or uploaded into the EHR for inclusion in the after-visit summary.
Yes! EIM's Clinical Practice Committee has created the EIM Health Care Provider Action Guide to help you integrate physical activity into patient encounters using the SBIRT model.
Studies show that brief physician counseling can induce a small, but significant increase in the number of patients meeting physical activity (PA) recommendations particularly among those at risk for cardiovascular disease. Repeat PA prescriptions help maintain this effect and referral to appropriate PA resources or programs helps even more.

BM Pinto et al.
Z Sabti et al
C Di Loreto et al
EA O'Connor et al
Read the EIM Summary Sheet and/or peruse the Rx for Health patient handout library. Note that there are specific handouts for older adults, teens and parents of young children, as well as many common chronic medical conditions. Find out what matters to the patient and empower them to choose physical activity options that resonate.
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Support for the Exercise is Medicine® Initiative is provided by:

Support for the Exercise is Medicine® Initiative is provided by:

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