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Older Adult Patient Education Issues Essay

842 words - 4 pages


Older Adult Patient Education Issues
Lisa D. Johnican
Grand Canyon University

Older Adult Patient Education Issues
The more a patient knows about his or her disease and understands reasons and methods for treatment, the better off s/he will be in the long run even if that long run is fatal. Patient education has significant benefits, including the improved ability of the patient to cope with the inevitable, more satisfaction with the care s/he receives, fewer complications and better recovery. Teaching older patients about their illness and strategies to cope with it will help them to feel more in control and ...view middle of the document...

Health care professionals should interact with each patient as if they are unique regardless of their age or disability. According to Pajnkihar (2009), “The relationship between patients and caregivers needs to be constantly renegotiated to boost dignity. When dignity is promoted, clients are empowered and their independence becomes the ‘core’ of the caring process” (p. 45). Elderly people are interested in and are capable of learning. Health care professionals should seek ways to minimize barriers to learning such as hearing loss. Speros (2009) suggests several strategies for interacting with hearing-impaired patients, including lowering the pitch of one’s voice, facing the client when speaking, eliminating background noise, allowing time for processing and asking patients to repeat what s/he heard. Having a paper and pencil handy is not a bad idea either, but should perhaps not be used as a first resort since it is just a reminder of what the patient has lost.
Initially, Alvin’s problems were not coping with bone cancer but with AD, yet when he was diagnosed it had not progressed to a stage where he was not cognitively aware of the diagnosis. His wife said that regardless, it was to her most of the health care providers spoke rather than him. This was partly because of the hearing loss but also because of the inevitable cognitive decline. However, Speros offers suggestions in how to adapt to these sorts of issues too, such as go slowly and begin with the simple/familiar and then progress to the more complicated information. She also...

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