Better than 5 Sticky Notes

by Cheryl Hall on August 1st, 2019

I was a home health practitioner and it was my first visit to a patient just released from acute care. I asked him for his home plan from the rehab department at the hospital, and he handed me 5 sticky notes.

Of course, I never doubted those notes were written with professionalism and with the best interest of the patient at heart, because I too had sent patients home with a hand written note illustrated with a stick figure or two.

But in that moment, in that patient’s home, I was struck by the thought – “OT can do better than that – I can do better than that”.

Patient education handouts that reinforce and complement our OT practice are essential to a patient-centered, holistic approach that supports excellent patient outcomes. Good, clear materials reinforce the concepts practiced while you were with the patient and help answer questions after you leave.

To be great, a patient education handout must include:

  • Simple, easily read instructions supported by clear illustrations
  • Tasks broken into individual, sequential steps
  • Separate handouts for left side and right side interventions
  • Best practices and evidence-based sources

I consider all of these elements as I develop new patient education handouts for my book, The Occupational Therapy Toolkit. The 7th edition of the OT Toolkit, released in 2018, offers occupational therapy practitioners a collection of 354 full-page illustrated patient handouts to print or copy for their patients.

Be better than a sticky note – download sample patient education handouts at today.

  • About Me

    Cheryl Hall
    Occupational Therapist
    Maryland, United States

    Welcome to a site devoted to sharing experience, knowledge and resources to make your job of being a great therapist a lot easier.

    I have been an occupational therapist for more than 30 years. I graduated from San Jose State University with degrees in Occupational Therapy, Gerontology, and Early Child Development. My passion is working with adults and children in home health but I have also worked in rehab, sub-acute rehab, hand therapy, transitional living for TBI, and hospital-based outpatient settings.

  • Previous Posts