We all know the importance of patient and family education. Many tools have been developed over the years, strategies have been explored, and recommendations have changed. We know that our approach must be individualized for each patient regardless of diagnosis, prognosis, age, gender, etc. We also are aware of barriers to providing patient education in the hospital setting – time, staffing, and access to resources – among others.
In Patient Education Strategies for Hospitalized Cardiovascular Patients: A Systematic Review,
the authors sought to identify and examine the characteristics and outcomes of cardiovascular (CV) health education interventions for hospitalized CV patients. Of the 25 studies that met the inclusion criteria, 80% (n = 20) were randomized controlled trials and 20% (n = 5) were quasi-experimental studies. A summary of the study population, intervention elements, outcomes, and results for each study as well as a synopsis of the characteristics of the educational interventions are presented.
Based on the interpretation of their results, the authors share 3 clinical pearls at the conclusion of their article:
- Evidence suggests that, compared with single-session interventions, programs that incorporate scheduled follow-up sessions as a core component are generally more effective.
- Interventions designed to build self-care, communication, and problem-solving skills may be more effective in improving behavioral and clinical outcomes than those focused solely on increasing knowledge.
- Patient education strategies that fit with the patient's learning styles, cognitive level, and motivation by using tailored interventions offer a more directed way to enhance compliance among patients.
Do you have a particular strategy for patient education? What types of educational interventions do you use most often?
Reference: Commodore-Mensah, Y., Himmelfarg, C.R. (2012). Patient Education Strategies for Hospitalized Cardiovascular Patients: A Systematic Review. Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 27(2).