Patient education allows patients to play a bigger role in their own care. It also aligns with the growing movement toward patient- and family-centered care.
To be effective, patient education needs to be more than instructions and information. Teachers and health care providers need to be able to assess patient needs and communicate clearly.
The success of patient education depends largely on how well you assess your patient's:
Often, the first step is to find out what the patient already knows. Use these guidelines to do a thorough assessment before starting patient education:
Falvo DR. Effective Patient Education: A Guide to Increased Adherence. 4th ed. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett; 2011: chap. 8.
Updated by: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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