Patients are often given printed educational materials to aid in their understanding and retention of crucial information regarding their health. Studies show that printed patient education materials may improve information retention1 and actually affect health behaviours2. It is challenging sometimes to determine what information patients find helpful. This project was designed to assess:
To determine Urogynecology patients’ background knowledge of UTIs and whether after reading a UTI information booklet, knowledge was augmented.
An educational brochure “Bladder & Kidney Infections” was prepared through a process of reviewing existing literature and patient information sources in consultation with several staff at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (SHSC). Once the materials were compiled, the brochure was written in clear, easy to understand language using SHSC’s “Patient and Family Education” committee’s framework.
The survey questions were designed to test basic knowledge on the etiology, prevention and treatment of UTIs. Research participants were asked to answer the same ten questions before (Pre-Test) and after (Post-Test) reading the brochure. These questions were intended to gauge the retention and recall of information presented in printed, rather than verbal format. Open-ended questions were used to gauge the usefulness of the information presented, as well as patients’ preferred sources of health information. The patients were recruited through convenience sampling at the Sunnybrook Urogynecology clinic.
56 women waiting in the Urogynecology Clinic waiting room agreed to participate in this survey. 3 women declined.
Total “Pre-Test” correct responses: 378/502
Total “Post-Test” correct responses: 435/495
2 value of 26.2, p < 0.00001
95% participants answered YES to the question: “Was the Bladder and Kidney Infections brochure helpful to you?”
Common themes noted when participants were asked to comment on whythe brochure was helpful/not helpful: (visual)
This study demonstrated a modest, but statistically significant impact of written educational material on patient understanding of bladder and kidney infection. Despite the modest difference in knowledge, 95% of participants stated that it was a helpful intervention, highlighting the importance of perception and engagement in the patient education process. In addition, this study demonstrated the importance of Family Physicians as the key providers of health information, as well as information obtained from internet searches. Patients’ feedback was incorporated into the final version of the “Bladder & Kidney Infections” booklet.
1. Wilson EAH, Park DC, Curtis LM, et al. Media and memory: The efficacy of video and print materials for promoting patient education about asthma. Patient Educ Couns. 2010;80(3):393-398.
2. Selea A, Sumarac-Dumanovic M, Pesic M, et al. The effects of education with printed material on glycemic control in patients with diabetes type 2 treated with different therapeutic regimens. Vojnosanit Pregl. 2011;68(8):676-683.