Chapter 5: Patient and Family Teaching
Specific goals for patient education include health promotion, prevention of disease, management of
illness, and appropriate selection and use of treatment options.
A teaching plan includes assessment of the patient’s ability, need, and readiness to learn as well as
identification of problems that can be resolved with teaching.
Learning occurs when there is an internal mental change characterized by rearrangement of neural
Teaching is a process of deliberately arranging external conditions to promote the internal
transformation that results in a change in behavior.
When teaching adults, it is important to identify what is valued by the person to enhance motivation.
Reinforcement is a strong motivational factor for maintaining behavior. Positive reinforcement
involves rewarding a desired behavior with a positive stimulus to increase its occurrence.
Required skills for the nurse as a teacher include knowledge of the subject matter, communication
skills, and empathy.
Because of shortened hospital stays and clinic visits, the nurse and the patient need to set priorities of
the patient’s learning needs so that teaching can occur during any contact with the patient or family.
Education of family members is important because family members can promote the patient’s self-
care and prevent complications.
The teaching process involves development of a plan that includes assessment, diagnosis, setting
patient outcomes or objectives, intervention, and evaluation.
The patient’s experiences, rate of learning, and ability to retain information are affected by age.
Pain, fatigue, and certain medications influence the patient’s ability to learn. Anxiety and d