The Vital Role of Your Nurse in Patient Education

Nurse educating a patient with a laptop course

Nurses are the first line of contact for patients in the office setting. It’s natural for the nurse to connect with the patient during this time.

Nurses can use this time to empower patients to improve their health and outcomes by thoughtfully using education and educational materials.

Make sure that your office supports and encourages this process between the nurse and patient.

7 Ways Nurses Can Help Educate Patients

How does your nurse support your teams’ educational efforts? Try some of the following strategies:

  1. Make education a priority. Have regular meetings to teach your staff about different aspects of kidney disease. Provide staff incentives to educate themselves and be an advocate in the office. A lunch-and-learn with you or your colleagues as a speaker is always popular.
  2. Provide guidelines so that the staff knows what is appropriate to discuss and when to discuss it.
  3. Every interaction is an opportunity. Education should start from the moment a patient enters the office and continues throughout the visit. Utilize this opportunity to gauge the patient’s knowledge base and develop a plan with the patient for additional learning.
  4. Delegate a nurse to be the primary contact for both providing education and encouraging continued learning. This could include scheduling educational classes to help patients follow their treatment plan. Having an “educational champion” will help your patients stay informed and knowledgeable about their disease process.
  5. Make education a requirement for your patient’s treatment plan. Inform the patient that learning about their disease process is part of the service your office will provide during their appointments.
  6. Provide educational handouts that cover what was discussed during the visit to emphasize your care plan and instructions.
  7. Have your nurse:
    • Ask the patient how much they understand about the educational topic.
    • Use inviting body language, such as maintaining eye contact.
    • Use lay terms or the patient’s primary language when possible.
    • Encourage compliance with the patient’s treatment plan.
    • Follow up with the patient after the office visit to answer any questions.
    • Find ways to create a connection with the patient and/or care provider so that these conversations are natural and informative.

Kidney Disease Education (KDE) for Your Patients with CKD

Raenali Publications™ provides both the in-depth educational workshops and patient handouts that will encourage continued learning. Our KDE patient education program meets CMS guidelines for reimbursement. Contact us for more information.

Raenali Publications® is a leading provider of innovative, physician-directed patient education in the field of nephrology.

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