Preparing Patients and Families as Educators
- Explain the goals of the educational event and why the perspective of patient and family members is important.
- Clarify expectations for participation and emphasize that patients and families bring unique expertise, i.e., their real-life experience in the health care system and their suggestions for change.
- Reassure patients and families that their participation will be respected and valued by clinicians.
- Give anticipatory guidance about content of the educational event and try to predict what may be especially evocative for patient and family educators.
- If patient/family educators will be sharing their stories, provide guidance about doing that effectively – and how stories can be integrated with other formats and approaches in education.
- If Q & A will be part of the educational event, empower patients and families to "speak up" if/when they are not comfortable responding to some questions.
- Outline nuts-and-bolts details and logistics, e.g., submission of PowerPoint slides and handouts, other participants, travel arrangements and directions (if applicable), expenses and reimbursement, attire.
- Provide initial guidance about returning home, i.e., reactions patient and family educators might have, strategies for addressing them.
(Adapted from IPPC's "Families as Educators: Guidance for Implementation")
Selecting Patients and Families