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 OTToolkit.com today.