Patient education goes hand-in-hand with improved patient outcomes and quality of life. Educating the patient is an integral part of the nurse's role in patient care. In order to ensure the success of the patient teaching plan, the processes involved in developing a nursing patient teaching plan should be centred around the patient and inclusive of the family.
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This step requires the analysis and organisation of information about the patient. Determine the patient's level of understanding about her disease, injury or condition.
Use the information gathered about the patient to judge how well she will be able to understand and apply what is taught to her.
Be sure to factor in cultural considerations that are specific to that patient such as ethnicity and religion. It will be necessary to factor in any information you have about the patient's level of development as well. It may be necessary for the nurse to motivate the patient in order for her to learn. Ability to learn is affected if the patient is too tired, in pain, upset or distracted.
Formulate patient goals. Take the patient and the family's point of view into consideration, as their input will have an effect on their outcomes. Patient outcomes and motivation are directly associated with the amount of input they have in determining their goals. The goals must be realistic and able to be achieved by the patient.
Identify how the teaching plan will be carried out. Implement the plan according the patient's learning style (audio, visual, or kinetic) as opposed to the nurse's teaching style.
Develop nursing goals based on desired health outcomes. They should be patient-centred and based on health outcomes for the patient's health status and quality of life.
The method of implementation of the nursing patient teaching plan should be specific to the patient's learning style and desired outcomes that were identified.
Prepare to document patient responses and level of understanding as the nurse perceives them while the teaching plan is implemented.
Prepare to document any other relevant information that will assist with the evaluation of learning.
An evaluation process will need to be formed in order to assess patient outcomes. The following specific elements of patient learning will need to be evaluated: patient knowledge, behaviour, attitude, and skills. The evaluation should include a review of the documentation that details patient responses and level of understanding that were recorded during the implementation steps.
The evaluation plan should include observations of the family's understanding of what will be required of them for the patient to achieve desired outcomes.
The last key element of the evaluation plan is the nurse's recommendation for follow-up procedures to be used in the event that the patient's learning was not sufficient to produce desired outcomes.
Tips and warnings
- Make sure that the nurses assigned to the patient have enough time to prepare, implement and evaluate the patient teaching plan so as not to compromise the outcomes for the patient.
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