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Survey: Do you use the Internet as a resource for patient education materials?


Specializes in CCU, Geriatrics, Critical Care, Tele. Has 26 years experience.

Here are the results of last months survey question

Do you use the Internet as a resource for patient education materials? :


Please feel free to read and post any comments that you have right here in this discussion thread by clicking the "Post Reply" button.


Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 28 years experience.

I've just started using the internet for patient education. Used it the other day when a patient asked for information on hypokalemia and GERD.

If anyone knows of any good patient education sites that I can use to make free printouts at work I would appreciate it.


Specializes in NICU.

Every single day, I hate to say.

Edited to add: Tweety, I've got a ton for the NICU, but I don't think those would help. ;)


it is a great resource

Which sites are you guys using the most? Does your facility have any guidlines or restrictions on educational materials. I would thin there might be some legal ramifications if inaccurate information was given out that wasn;t endorsed by the faciliti. Hmmm...


Specializes in NICU.

I use info off the internet to design my own patient handouts, then have them approved by my supervisor before handing them out. I also put a source at the bottom to attribute the info to and a disclaimer that this information is not actual medical advice and to please see your doctor regarding this topic. When I give it to the families, I also tell them that, and make sure they understand, and then document it in the patient education chart. I keep copies of all original handouts I make with my supervisor's signature on them in a binder.

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 43 years experience.

It is strictly AGAINST hospital policy where I work because there is no assurance of the quality of the information.

However, the hospital purchased (& participated in the development of) a package of materials that are available on our website. They are available free to the general public.

As a children's hospital, the material is geared toward pediatrics. The website is http://www.chkd.org

Once in the website, go to "our health library"


jadednurse, the patient education materials I use from the internet are for when a patient is discharged.

ie: community support groups, outpatient clinics, phone numbers, etc.

We use a local news/medical site that is a sister company of our facility.


Specializes in NICU.

If you have a patient education committee (or whichever committee approves all of your standardized patient forms, handouts, hospital propaganda, etc.) you should be able to submit a handout to them through your supervisor for approval and printing.


Specializes in NICU.

llg, I just visited your hospital's web site. What a wonderful resource for parents! Would you mind PM'ing me with some more info about that package (or a contact person, or something like that, if you have it?)?

Where I work, everything you need is on the Inet. It's very helpful to give patients handouts on their disease process, a procedure they are having done, meds they are taking, etc. It's not to say that we are supposed to not do pt. education as RN's, b/c that is one of our tasks. This material just supplements our teaching them; it also allows them to lookover material when they get home. They might read something that the nurse forgot to mention or they might like to review the material beforehand to make sure they understand something.

Monica RN,BSN

Specializes in ER, ICU, Nursing Education, LTC, and HHC. Has 20 years experience.

always use the internet to research, If I doubt the source, I check it out some more..........

gwenith, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

I just accessed the diabetic website the other day and was able to help a patient find out where a local support facility was. Also used it occasionally for teaching. Our state goverments have big internal websites that are only accessable to the state goverment hospitals. They have a lot of information.

I always check out the source of the information and I will only use those sources that I think are valid i.e. Diabetic association of Australia.

I would rather vet the information and give it to the patient than have them surf the net themselves and find misinformation.

bellehill, RN

Specializes in Neuro Critical Care. Has 9 years experience.

We have an intra-hospital patient education system which is sometimes limited. I never hesitate to use the internet, I always use reputable sites I trust and it is a great resource.

Yes, I use Mayo Clinics web site frequently. I feel safe that thier information is accurate and up to date.


Specializes in Everything but psych!. Has 31 years experience.

I use the internet frequently. We also have a hospital intranet, but it cannot possibly contain everything! I always screen information before I give it to the patient. Thanks goodness for the internet. What did we do without it? I imagine we cut down more trees?


Specializes in Step down, ICU, ER, PACU, Amb. Surg.

Mayo web site is a good one and I also like WebMd's patient info site. I always read through it before printing and handing out and then when I do give it out to the patient, I go over it with them and provide them with a phone number that they can call if they have questions in addition to encouraging them to write down questions to take to the doctor with them. Medscape also has patient info which is very good as well. Plus our hospital has a program of patient info that we can access to give to the patients to take home.

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