The following was posted on the BHIC Blog.
Helping Patients Understand Their Medical Treatment
By Sandra G. Boodman
March 1, 2011
“Kaiser Health News in collaboration with The Washington Post
An elderly woman sent home from the hospital develops a life-threatening infection because she doesn’t understand the warning signs listed in the discharge instructions. A man flummoxed by an intake form in a doctor’s office reflexively writes “no” to every question because he doesn’t understand what is being asked. A young mother pours a drug that is supposed to be taken by mouth into her baby’s ear, perforating the eardrum. And a man in his 70s preparing for his first colonoscopy uses a suppository as directed, but without first removing it from the foil packet.
Each of these examples provided by health-care workers or patient advocates illustrates one of the most pervasive and under-recognized problems in medicine: Americans’ alarmingly low levels of health literacy — the ability to obtain, understand and use health information.”
Well Spouse Association
“When one is sick, two need help”
The Well spouse Association provides support for the caregiving spouse or partner of chronically ill or injured individuals. They provide services to all – and are not disease specific. WSA provides peer-to-peer support, one-on-one mentoring, round-robin letter writing, and an internet forum for discussions on best practices, personal issues, fiscal challenges and support. They produce a quarterly newsletter by and for spousal caregivers, as well as a bi-weekly e-newsletter. [IPNRC eNotes #133]