Person Based Approach

Publications from our team

Each of these papers illustrates ways in which the PBA can be implemented. Key papers are indicated by the star symbol.

The PBA has also been used by researchers and organisations independent of our team. We have highlighted some examples under the ‘Useful Resources’ tab.


These papers provide an overview of the Person-Based Approach:

Morrison, L., Muller, I., Yardley, L., & Bradbury, K. (2018). The person-based approach to planning, optimising, evaluating and implementing behavioural health interventions. The European Health Psychologist, 20(3), 464-469.
Yardley, L., Morrison, L., Bradbury, K., & Muller, I. (2015). The person-based approach to intervention development: application to digital health-related behavior change interventions. Journal of medical Internet research, 17(1), e30.
Yardley, L., Ainsworth, B., Arden-Close, E., & Muller, I. (2015). The person-based approach to enhancing the acceptability and feasibility of interventions. Pilot and Feasibility Studies, 1(1), 37.

Intervention planning

These papers describe how the Person-Based Approach can be used alongside theory- and evidence-based approaches to intervention planning and integrated with PPI and stakeholder co-design:

Muller, I., Santer, M., Morrison, L., Morton, K., Roberts, A., Rice, C., Williams, M. and Yardley, L. (2019). Combining qualitative research with PPI: reflections on using the person-based approach for developing behavioural interventions. Research Involvement and Engagement, 5(1), p.34. DOI: 10.1186/s40900-019-0169-8
Band, R., Bradbury, K., Morton, K., May, C., Michie, S., Mair, F. S., Murray, E., McManus R. J., Little, P. & Yardley, L. (2017). Intervention planning for a digital intervention for self-management of hypertension: a theory-, evidence- and person-based approach. Implementation Science, 12(1), 25.
Santillo, M., Sivyer, K., Krusche, A., Mowbray, F., Jones, N., Peto, T. E. A., Walker, A. S., Llewelyn, M. J., & Yardley, L. On behalf of the ARK-Hospital stakeholder development group. (2019). Intervention planning for ARK (Antibiotic Review Kit): A digital and behavioural intervention to safely review and reduce antibiotic prescription in acute and general medicine. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy.
Greenwell, K., Sereda, M., Bradbury, K., Geraghty, A. W. A., Coulson, N. S., & Hoare, D. J. (2021). Intervention planning for the Tinnitus E-Programme 2.0, an internet-based cognitive behavioral intervention for tinnitus. American Journal of Audiology.
Rai, T., Morton, K., Roman, C., Doogue, R., Rice, C., Williams, M., ... & Hinton, L. (2020). Optimizing a digital intervention for managing blood pressure in stroke patients using a diverse sample: Integrating the person‐based approach and patient and public involvement. Health Expectations, 24(2), 327-340.
Greenwell, K., Sivyer, K., Vedhara, K., Yardley, L., Game, F., Chalder, T., ... Bradbury, K. (2018). Intervention planning for the REDUCE maintenance intervention: a digital intervention to reduce re-ulceration risk among patients with a history of diabetic foot ulcers. BMJ Open, 8, [e019865]. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2017-019865
Geraghty, A., Muñoz, R., Yardley, L., Mc Sharry, J., Little, P., & Moore, M. (2016). Developing an unguided internet intervention for emotional distress in primary care patients: applying common factor and person-based approaches. JMIR Mental Health, 3(4), [e53]. DOI: 10.2196/mental.5845
Yardley, L., Miller, S., Teasdale, E., & Little, P. (2011). Using mixed methods to design a web-based behavioural intervention to reduce transmission of colds and flu. Journal of Health Psychology, 16(2), 353-364. DOI: 10.1177/1359105310377538

These papers present some example methods used by our team for synthesising existing qualitative research:

Corbett, T., Singh, K., Payne, L., Bradbury, K., Foster, C., Watson, E., ... Yardley, L. (2017). Understanding acceptability of and engagement with web-based interventions aiming to improve quality of life in cancer survivors: a synthesis of current research. Psycho-Oncology.
Harris, P. S., Payne, L., Morrison, L., Green, S. M., Ghio, D., Hallett, C., ... Yardley, L. (2019). Barriers and facilitators to screening and treating malnutrition in older adults living in the community: a mixed-methods synthesis. BMC Family Practice, 20(100), 1-10. DOI: 10.1186/s12875-019-0983-y
Miles, C., Arden-Close, E., Thomas, M., Bruton, A., Yardley, L., Hankins, M., & Kirby, S. (2017). Barriers and facilitators of effective self-management in asthma: systematic review and thematic synthesis of patient and healthcare professional views. npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, 27, [57]. DOI: 10.1038/s41533-017-0056-4
Morton, K., Dennison, L., May, C., Murray, E., Little, P., McManus, R. J., & Yardley, L. (2016). Using digital interventions for self-management of chronic physical health conditions: a meta-ethnography review of published studies. Patient Education and Counselling, 1-20. DOI: 10.1016/j.pec.2016.10.019

These papers present some examples of how our team have used qualitative research with target users to inform intervention planning:

Pollet, S., Denison-Day, J., Bradbury, K., Essery, R., Grey, E., Western, M., … & Yardley, L. (2020). A Qualitative Exploration of Perceptions of a Digital Intervention to Promote Physical Activity in Older Adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 29(3), 442-454.
Strömmer, S., Shaw, S., Jenner, S., Vogel, C., Lawrence, W., Woods-Townsend, K., Farrell, D., … Barker, M. (2021). How do we harness adolescent values in designing health behaviour change interventions: A qualitative study. British Journal of Health Psychology.
Shaw, S., Simao, S. C., Jenner, S., Lawrence, W. T., Woods-Townsend, K., Vogel, C. A., … Strömmer, S. T. (2021). Parental perspectives on negotiations over diet and physical activity: how do we involve parents in adolescent health interventions? Public Health Nutrition, 24(9), 2727-2736. Doi:
Payne, L., Harris, P. S., Ghio, D., Slodkowska-Barabasz, J., Sutcliffe, M., Kelly, J., … Morrison, L. (2020). Beliefs about inevitable decline among home-living older adults at risk of malnutrition: A qualitative study. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetic, 33(6), 841-851. Doi:
Santer, M., Muller, I., Yardley, L., Lewis-Jones, S., Ersser, S., & Little, P. (2016). Parents’ and carers’ views about emollients for childhood eczema: qualitative interview study. BMJ Open, 6(e011887), 1-9. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2016-011887
Santer, M., Muller, I., Yardley, L., Burgess, H., Ersser, S. J., Lewis-Jones, S., & Little, P. (2015). 'You don't know which bits to believe': qualitative study exploring carers' experiences of seeking information on the internet about childhood eczema. BMJ Open, 5(4), e006339-[6pp]. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006339
Garip, G., Morton, K., Bridger, R., & Yardley, L. (2014). Weight management experiences of overweight and obese Royal Navy personnel. Military Behavioral Health, 2(1), 105-109. DOI: 10.1080/21635781.2013.833056
Santer, M., Burgess, H., Yardley, L., Ersser, S. J., Lewis-Jones, S., Muller, I., ... Little, P. (2013). Managing childhood eczema: qualitative study exploring carers' experiences of barriers and facilitators to treatment adherence. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 69(11), 2493-2501. DOI: 10.1111/jan.12133
Santer, M., Burgess, H., Yardley, L., Ersser, S., Lewis-Jones, S., Muller, I., ... Little, P. (2012). Experiences of carers managing childhood eczema and their views on its treatment: a qualitative study. British Journal of General Practice, 62(597), 261-267. DOI: 10.3399/bjgp12X636083
Yardley, L., Williams, S., Bradbury, K., Garip, G., Renouf, S., Ware, L., ... Little, P.(2012). Integrating user perspectives into the development of a web-based weight management intervention. Clinical Obesity, 2(5-6), 132-141. DOI: 10.1111/cob.12001
Tonkin-Crine, S., Yardley, L., Coenen, S., Fernandez-Vandellos, P., Krawczyk, J., Touboul, P., ... Little, P. (2011). GPs' views in five European countries of interventions to promote prudent antibiotic use. British Journal of General Practice, 61(586), 337-338. DOI: 10.3399/bjgp11X572445

Intervention Optimisation

These papers describe methods that can be used to guide the process of modifying prototype interventions based on user feedback:

Morton, K., Ainsworth, B., Miller, S., Rice, C., Bostock, J., Denison-Day, J., … & Yardley, L. (2021). Adapting behavioural interventions for a changing public health context: A worked example of implementing a digital intervention during a global pandemic using rapid optimisation methods. Frontiers in Public Health, 9 (668197). DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2021.668197
Bradbury, K., Morton, K., Band, R., van Woezik, A., Grist, R., McManus, R., ... Yardley, L. (2018). Using the Person-Based Approach to optimise a digital intervention for the management of hypertension. PLoS ONE, 13(5), 1-18. [e0196868]. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0196868

These papers provide some examples of how qualitative methods have been used iteratively by our team to understand users’ reactions to and engagement with prototype interventions:

Bradbury, K., Morton, K., Band, R., May, C., McManus, R., Little, P., & Yardley, L. (2017). Understanding how primary care practitioners perceive an online intervention for the management of hypertension. BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, 17(5), 1-13. DOI: 10.1186/s12911-016-0397-x
Essery, R., Kirby, S., Geraghty, A., & Yardley, L. (2017). Older adults’ experiences of internet-based vestibular rehabilitation for dizziness: a longitudinal study. Psychology and Health.
Rowsell, A., Muller, I., Murray, E., Little, P., Byrne, C., Ganahl, K., ... Yardley, L.(2015). Views of people with high and low levels of health literacy about a digital intervention to promote physical activity for diabetes: a qualitative study in five countries. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 17(10), 1-12. DOI: 10.2196/jmir.4999
Arden-Close, E., Teasdale, E., Tonkin-Crine, S., Pitre, N., Stafford-Watson, M., Gibson, D., ... Yardley, L. (2013). Patients' perceptions of the potential of breathing training for asthma: a qualitative study. Primary Care Respiratory Journal, 22(4), 449-53. DOI: 10.4104/pcrj.2013.00092
Anthierens, S., Tonkin-Crine, S., Douglas, E., Fernandez-Vandellos, P., Krawczyk, J., Llor, C., ... GRACE INTRO study team (2012). General Practitioners' views on the acceptability and applicability of a web-based intervention to reduce antibiotic prescribing for acute cough in multiple European countries: a qualitative study prior to a randomised trial. BMC Family Practice, 13(101). DOI: 10.1186/1471-2296-13-101
Yardley, L., Morrison, L. G., Andreou, P., Joseph, J., & Little, P. (2010). Understanding reactions to an internet-delivered health-care intervention: accommodating user preferences for information provision. BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, 10(52), [10pp]. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6947-10-52

Intervention Evaluation

These papers report process evaluations exploring users’ experiences and usage of some of the interventions developed by our team to help understand engagement and implementation:

Ainsworth, B., Steele, M., Stuart, B., Joseph, J., Miller, S., Morrison, L., ... Yardley, L. (2017). Using an analysis of behavior change to inform effective digital intervention design: How did the PRIMIT website change hand hygiene behavior across 8993 users? Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 51(3), 423-431. DOI: 10.1007/s12160-016-9866-9
Morrison, L. G., Geraghty, A. W. A., Lloyd, S., Goodman , N., Michaelides, D. T., Hargood, C., ... Yardley, L. (2018). Comparing usage of a web and app stress management intervention: An observational study. Internet Interventions. DOI: 10.1016/j.invent.2018.03.006
Arden-Close, E., Yardley, L., Kirby, S., Thomas, M., & Bruton, A. (2017). Patients’ experiences of breathing retraining for asthma: a qualitative process analysis of participants in the intervention arms of the BREATHE trial. npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, 27, [56]. DOI: 10.1038/s41533-017-0055-5
Arden-Close, E., Smith, E., Bradbury, K., Morrison, L., Dennison, L., Michaelides, D. T., & Yardley, L. (2015). A visualisation tool to analyse usage of web-based interventions: the example of Positive Online Weight Reduction (POWeR). JMIR Human Factors, 1-25. DOI: 10.2196/humanfactors.4310
Renouf, S., Bradbury, K., Yardley, L., & Little, P. (2015). The role of nurse support within an internet-delivered weight management intervention: a qualitative study. Psychology, Health & Medicine, 20(8), 963-971. DOI: 10.1080/13548506.2014.986138
Bradbury, K., Dennison, L., Little, P., & Yardley, L. (2015). Using mixed methods to develop and evaluate an online weight management intervention. British Journal of Health Psychology, 20(1), 45-55. DOI: 10.1111/bjhp.12125
Anthierens, S., Tonkin-Crine, S., Cals, J. W., Coenen, S., Yardley, L., Brookes-Howell, L., ... Francis, N. A. (2014). Clinicians' views and experiences of interventions to enhance the quality of antibiotic prescribing for acute respiratory tract infections. General Journal of Internal Medicine, 1-9. DOI: 10.1007/s11606-014-3076-6
Morrison, L. G., Hargood, C., Lin, S. X., Dennison, L., Joseph, J., Hughes, S., ... Yardley, L. (2014). Understanding usage of a hybrid website and smartphone app for weight management: a mixed-methods study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 16(10), e201. DOI: 10.2196/jmir.3579
Tonkin-Crine, S., Anthierens, S., Francis, N. A., Brugman, C., Fernandez-Vandellos, P., Krawczyk, J., ... Cals, J. W. (2014). Exploring patients' views of primary care consultations with contrasting interventions for acute cough: a six-country European qualitative study. npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, 24, 14026-[6pp]. DOI: 10.1038/npjpcrm.2014.26

Person-Based Interventions

These papers present outcome evaluations of some of the interventions that have been developed by our team using the Person-Based Approach:

Bruton, A., Lee, A., Yardley, L., Raftery, J., Arden-Close, E., Kirby, S., ... Thomas, M. (2018). Physiotherapy breathing retraining for asthma: a randomised controlled trial. The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, 6(1), 19-28. DOI: 10.1016/S2213-2600(17)30474-5, 10.1016/S2213-2600(17)30474-5
Muller, I., Rowsell, A., Stuart, B., Hayter, V., Little, P., Ganahl, K., ... Yardley, L. (2017). Effects on engagement and health literacy outcomes of digital materials promoting physical activity in people with diabetes: an international randomized trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 19(1), 1-13. DOI: 10.2196/jmir.6601
Geraghty, A., Essery, R., Kirby, S., Stuart, B., Turner, D., Little, P., ... Yardley, L.(2017). Internet-based vestibular rehabilitation for older adults with chronic dizziness: a randomised controlled trial in primary care. The Annals of Family Medicine, 209-216.
Little, P., Stuart, B., Hobbs, F. D. R., Kelly, J., Smith, E., Bradbury, K., ... Yardley, L.(2017). Randomised controlled trial and economic analysis of an internet-based weight management programme: POWeR+ (Positive Online Weight Reduction). Health Technology Assessment, 21(4). DOI: 10.3310/hta21040
Little, P., Stuart, B., Andreou, P., McDermott, L., Joseph, J., Mullee, M., ... Yardley, L. (2016). A primary care randomised controlled trial of a tailored interactive website for the self-management of respiratory infections (Internet Doctor). BMJ Open, 6(e009769), 1-9. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2015-009769
Little, P., Stuart, B., Hobbs, R. F. D., Kelly, J., Smith, E. R., Bradbury, K. J., ... Yardley, L. (2016). An internet-based intervention with brief nurse support to manage obesity in primary care (POWeR+): a pragmatic, parallel-group, randomised controlled trial. The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, 4(10), 821-828. DOI: 10.1016/S2213-8587(16)30099-7
Little, P., Stuart, B., Hobbs, F. D. R., Moore, M., Barnett, J., Popoola, D., ... Yardley, L. (2015). An internet-delivered handwashing intervention to modify influenza-like illness and respiratory infection transmission (PRIMIT): a primary care randomised trial. Lancet, 386(10004), 1631-1639. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(15)60127-1
Santer, M., Muller, I., Yardley, L., Burgess, H., Selinger, H., Stuart, B., & Little, P. (2014). Supporting self-care for families of children with eczema with a Web-based intervention plus health care professional support: pilot randomized controlled trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 16(3), e70. DOI: 10.2196/jmir.3035
Little, P., Stuart, B., Francis, N., Douglas, E., Tonkin-Crine, S., Anthierens, S., ... on behalf of the GRACE consortium (2013). Effects of internet-based training on antibiotic prescribing rates for acute respiratory-tract infections: a multinational, cluster, randomised, factorial, controlled trial. Lancet, 382(9899), 1175-1182. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(13)60994-0