Patient Guide to World Wide Web

Patient Guide to WWW Armon Copeland 361: Information Systems Summer Term 2011 Introduction The Internet literature provides patients and families with an opportunity they have never had before. It allows patients to have access to incredibly affluent, reliable and up-to-date medical information. Not too long ago this information could only be found in medical libraries and bookstores. Today, patient and families have access to this information in the comfort and privacy of their own dwelling. It is the nurse responsibility to foster this thirst for information and help guide our patients to find information that is reliable and reputable.

Patient Education “There is a great deal of information directed at patients on the Web. What is most important is finding information that is reliable and consistent with best practice and standards of care. For the purpose of discussion, the educational tools are separated into four types: Handouts: These are self-contained documents that are complete unto themselves. Good for handing to a patient in their room. Hyper-linked documents: These are pages that are cross-linked with other resources that allow the patient to explore and find more information that fits their personal needs and is best viewed on-line.

Decision support: These tools allow a person to obtain information about an important decision and to assess how their own personal beliefs influence their decision. Evaluative: Allow the patient to assess their own health risks and is generally interactive and best done on-line for immediate feedback (Kleebreg 2000). ” How to use the Internet Printing information handouts for patients who want to know more about their diagnosis. Finding patient information sheets about a medication when grabbing a sample from the cabinet. Direct the patient to the internet site Medformation. com or some other reliable web sites where hey can find more information. Direct patients to trustworthy on-line decision support tools. Select a search engine: At the top of any page on your computer, type the phrase “search engines” into the Search Bar to attain access to several different internet sites that specifically aid in searching. Common search engines: Press the Enter key on the keyboard of your computer. Choose a few of the most specific or relevant keywords or phrases to describe your topic. Utilize synonyms. Type your choice of words into the Search Bar offered by your chosen search engine. Press the Enter key on your keyboard. Assess your results.

Search through your list of web pages to pinpoint information. Repeat above steps as necessary. Choose a different search engine. Choose new search words that are more or less specific. While engines will likely be “consistent” for a highly popular web sites, less popular web sites may be ranked very differently and it may make sense to try multiple engines. Judging Quality Patient Literature This may be viewed just as one would evaluate a medical journal or any other article appearing in printed media, it is important to look at the publication (web site) the publications source of funding and the source of funding for the study.

When evaluating web sites, a quick glance of the site’s domain can tell you a great deal: .comcommercial site .edueducational institution .edu/~paul Paul’s web pages at the educational institution .govGovernment site .orgNon-profit organization The teaching and learning process “The process of patient teaching refers to the steps you follow to provide teaching and to measure learning. The five steps involved in the teaching-learning process are: • Assessing learning needs and learning readiness • Developing learning objectives • Planning and implementing patient teaching • Evaluating patient learning Documenting patient teaching and learning The teaching and learning process is very similar to the nursing process steps of assessment, diagnosis, care planning, care implementation, and evaluation. The first step in the process of patient teaching is to assess what the patient and family already know, what they want and need to learn, and what will be the best way to teach them. Start the process by talking with patients to determine what they see as their health care goals, what their priorities for learning are, how ready they are to learn, and what is their preferred learning style (Habel 2005). ” To assess learning style, ask patients and family about something they recently learned and how they learned it by reading about it, listening to information, or by actual hands-on learning. Determining learning readiness is a crucial part of patient and family assessment. This part of the process begins when the patient and family member, identify the need to learn a new skill on how to complete skin care assessment, blood sugar monitoring, and medication administration (Habel 2005). ” If the patient and family identify the need “What exactly will medication administration, blood sugar monitoring and skin care assessment involve? or “How will I manage this when I go home? The patient and family are demonstrating learning readiness. After conversing with the patient, interview the family members. Family members can be included in the assessment when they visit the patient, or by telephone. Conversations with the patient’s family will provide missing information, enrich understanding of what was heard from the patient, or may alter the patient’s home situation. Teaching Materials Krames Pamphlets and brochures Posters and flip charts Videotapes and audiotapes Closed circuit television Computer assisted instruction via CDs Patient Models

Develop learning objectives The next step in the patient and family education process is to develop learning objectives. Unlike goals, which are general and long term, learning objectives are specific, attainable, measurable, and short-term statements. For example, for a newly diagnosed diabetic patient, a goal will be to learn how to maintain blood glucose levels between 70 and 180 mg/dl. Reaching this goal may be overwhelming unless it’s broken down into specific objectives that lead up to the overall goal. For this patient, an objective of listing 5 symptoms of low blood sugar is a realistic objective.

Evaluation of Teaching Methods “Teaching success decreases when the restrictions of the patient’s environment are not considered. This problem occurs when we ignore important factors such as lack of family support, financial resources, or cultural issues that influence health care management. Another error occurs when we forget that the patient has the right to change their mind. This problem is most likely to occur when we overly invest in the patient’s progress (Habel 2006). ” For example, an elderly woman planned to give her own insulin, but changed her mind, deciding that her husband and daughter would be more appropriate.

However, the health care team was so committed to make the patient “independent” that they continued to insist on the original plan. Using medical jargon is a common mistake that often promotes confusion and frustration. As the content expert, it is desirable and appropriate for the nurse to have specific teaching goals in mind. However, the nurse must also determine the patient’s goals and negotiate them with the patient and family to achieve positive outcomes the patient and family both want.

A patient with diabetes may set goals for himself that include giving insulin medications and learning appropriate injection sites. As the nurse with these goals at the forefront, but you also push the patient to participate in a smoking cessation program. If the patient does not share this goal, it’s unlikely he will adopt this goal as his own. By learning more about the process of patient teaching, the nurse can continuously improve the ability to give patients and families the tools they need to improve and maintain their love ones health.

Developing and implementing a realistic teaching plan, evaluating the results of learning, documenting teaching effectively, and avoiding common teaching mistakes will help improve the nurse patient teaching skills. References Habel, M(2005). Getting the message across: The patient teaching part 3 http://www. nursingspectrum. com/ Habel, M(2006). Getting the message across: The patient teaching part 4 http://www. nursingspectrum. com/ Kleebreg, P (2000). Using the Internet as a Patient Education Tool http://fpen. org/train/web/evaluating-sites. html