Purpose The aim of this study was to conduct a process evaluation of a whole-genome sequence report form (SRF) used to reduce nosocomial SARS-CoV-2 through changing infection prevention and control (IPC) behaviours within the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods We used a three-staged design. Firstly, we described and theorized the purported content of the SRF using the behaviour change wheel (BCW). Secondly, we used inductive thematic analysis of one-to-one interviews (n = 39) to explore contextual accounts of using the SRF. Thirdly, further deductive analysis gauged support for the intervention working as earlier anticipated. Results It was possible to theorize the SRF using the BCW approach and visualize it within a simple logic model. Inductive thematic analyses identified the SRF's acceptability, ease of use and perceived effectiveness. However, major challenges to embedding it in routine practice during the unfolding COVID-19 crisis were reported. Notwithstanding this insight, deductive analysis showed support for the putative intervention functions ‘Education’, ‘Persuasion’ and ‘Enablement’; behaviour change techniques ‘1.2 Problem solving’, ‘2.6 Biofeedback’, ‘2.7 Feedback on outcomes of behaviour’ and ‘7.1 Prompts and cues’; and theoretical domains framework domains ‘Knowledge’ and ‘Behavioural regulation’. Conclusions Our process evaluation of the SRF, using the BCW approach to describe and theorize its content, provided granular support for the SRF working to change IPC behaviours as anticipated. However, our complementary inductive thematic analysis highlighted the importance of the local context in constraining its routine use. For SRFs to reach their full potential in reducing nosocomial infections, further implementation research is needed.


This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.© 2023 The Authors. British Journal of Health Psycholog y published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Psychological Society.

Cite as

Flowers, P., Leiser, R., Mapp, F., McLeod, J., Stirrup, O., Illingworth, C., Blackstone, J. & Breuer, J. 2023, 'A qualitative process evaluation using the behaviour change wheel approach: did a whole genome sequence report form (SRF) used to reduce nosocomial SARS-CoV-2 within UK hospitals operate as anticipated?', British Journal of Health Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjhp.12666

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Last updated: 18 October 2023
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