AP1: Life Care


Here is a checklist of knowledge and understanding needed for Life Care. You will be expected to apply your knowledge and understanding to familiar and unfamiliar situations.


AP1.1There are many organisations and people involved in life care.Effective life care requires a co-ordinated effort between all involved. Organisations operate locally, nationally and internationally. Their work, and that of the people that work in them, is regulated to ensure high standards of service.

I should be able to:


       recall three examples of local organisations that provide health care and fitness facilities for the community;

       describe the provision offered by one local organisation that provides health care or enhances fitness;

       describe features of a national health service (makes health care available to all citizens; can provide specialist care not available locally, monitor national trends, plan suitable health care, and allocate resources where and when they are needed; but has to manage tensions between different services, spending on administration as well as practitioners and facilities directly serving the public).


Many practitioners help people to maintain and improve their health and fitness.They respond to emergencies, provide treatment and aftercare for people.Health information sources are important.


I should be able to:


       recall one example of the title and role of health or fitness practitioner;

       recall three examples of the advantages of regular contact between health or fitness practitioners and their patients or clients;

       describe three examples to illustrate the importance of education and public information about health;

       explain why, despite the expense of health education and public information programmes, these may be cost effective in the long term.





AP1.2 Baseline assessment


Health or fitness practitioners often begin by taking a detailed medical history of a person.This helps them to decide what further tests may be needed.



I should be able to:


         recall factors in the personís medical or lifestyle history that should be disclosed before treatment begins or before an exercise regime is started (limited to present symptoms, current medication, alcohol or tobacco consumption, general level of physical activity, family medical history, previous treatments);

         describe briefly why this information is needed;

         explain why the risk to a patient must be assessed before any diagnostic test is carried out;

         recall one example of an emergency where a witnessís evidence is vital for correct diagnosis and treatment.


A number of basic tests are commonly used to determine a personís state of health and/or fitness.


I should be able to:


         describe how basic information is collected in an initial health or fitness assessment (pulse rate, temperature, blood pressure, height, body mass, gender, age);

         calculate and interpret body mass index data;

         select the equipment used to measure a personís pulse, temperature (clinical thermometer, liquid crystal and electronic sensor), blood pressure (sphygmomanometer and electronic sensor);

         use a specific example to explain why personal medical or fitness information must be recorded, stored and made available to other people on the health or fitness practitioner team.


Doctors often require more detailed information about a patientís condition. This may involve haematology, microbiology, biochemistry or medical imaging techniques. Some tests are more expensive to carry out than others.Referrals and associated tests for some conditions are prioritised.


I should be able to:


         recall that samples (blood, urine, saliva, tissue sections, faeces, pus) are taken and sent to different hospital departments for analysis;

         describe how a blood sample is taken;

         recall that urine samples can be tested for the presence of nitrite (bacteria), human chorionic gonadotrophin, protein or glucose;

         discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using test sticks for testing urine;

         recall that electrocardiograms (ECG) can be used to study the functioning of the heart;

         recall that medical imaging techniques are non-invasive methods of seeing inside the body and can provide both structural and functional information;

         describe one medical appropriate use for each of (a) X-ray imaging, and (b) ultrasound;

         recall that other imaging techniques are available (CAT, PET and MRI scans).


AP1.3††††††††††† Diagnosis and action plans


Life care involves dialogue and decision making. A person decides if their health and/or fitness differs from accepted norms or their expectations.The health or fitness practitioner uses evidence to diagnose the state of the personís health.


I should be able to:


         interpret information on pulse rate, temperature, blood pressure, height and body mass;


         identify possible causes of the following symptoms:


(a) higher and (b) lower than average pulse rate.

(a) higher and (b) lower than average temperature.

(a) higher and (b) lower than average diastolic blood pressure;


         recall two examples of diagnoses that can be obtained from examination of urine andblood samples;


         interpret simple medical images obtained using X-rays and ultrasound.



Based upon a diagnosis of the situation, the health or fitness practitioner proposes a course of action and seeks the personís agreement before proceeding.


I should be able to:


         use an example to explain that treatments often have side effects and that these are weighed against the benefits gained;

         use an example to show that there is often more than one way to achieve an agreed target (enhanced fitness, cure, recovery, rehabilitation);

         recall an example to illustrate the difference between treating the symptoms and curing the problem.







Health and fitness practitioners often have to prioritise their actions when many people are

involved.In emergency care, the injured must be sorted according to the seriousness of their

condition.In general, decisions must be taken about the most effective and efficient use of



I should be able to:


     describe a system for prioritising emergency treatment when many people are involved;

     describe how a hospital or health and fitness centre manages its facilities to ensure their most effective and efficient use;

     describe how cost and availability of treatments may influence the decision making process.


Once a diagnosis or physical assessment has been made, a treatment or aftercare programme is devised.It is implemented and the progress of the person is monitored.


I should be able to:


         describe briefly one example each of (a) surgery, (b) exercise regime, (c) diet, (d) drug therapy and (e) public health campaign that is used to improve health or fitness;

         describe how diabetes can sometimes be treated by carefully controlling the diet;

         explain the role of the physiotherapist in treatment of skeletal-muscular injury;

         describe a set of exercises that would be carried out to treat one skeletal-muscular injury.



Once a course of treatment or fitness training is underway, it needs to be monitored. Decisions need to be made as to whether the programme is having the desired effect.Sometimes a programme is modified in the light of the personís progress towards the desired goals.


I should be able to:



         describe briefly (a) one example of monitoring a personís progress during treatment or fitness training, and (b) one example of monitoring after treatment or fitness training is complete;

         explain why accurate record-keeping during treatment or fitness training is essential

         explain that any assessment of progress needs to take into account the accuracy of the monitoring technique and the reliability of the data obtained;

         recall two examples of reasons for modifying a programme before it has been completed.






Health and fitness practitioners generally take a problem-solving approach. They function in role and it is most helpful if they have some specific personal qualities.


I should be able to:


         developing a detached yet personal relationship with the client;

         being able to make judgements when client statements and evidence conflict;

         recognising the importance of team work;

         considering the whole person, including family, workplace and community contexts;

         drawing on knowledge and previous experience;

         showing personal qualities (empathy, patience, tact, a manner which encourages confidence and trust);

         using communication skills effectively (able to listen, to explain, to seek clarification by reinterpreting client statements);

         using a questioning approach in order to:

         gather evidence;

         decide when reference to expert knowledge or experience is required;

         monitor response and adjust treatments appropriately