With the star rating system coming into effect this summer, focusing on quality is going to be once again a priority for agencies. The focus on quality will encompass the need to teaching materials to be provided to patients and their caregivers.
For many agencies, buying the materials to handout can be expensive. But with many resources available on the internet, creating a patient education library that is up to date with little to no cost can be achieved.
One of the best resources for free and widely distributable information comes from the National Institutes of Health. Whether your agency focuses on just providing services to the elderly or provides a variety of services from pediatrics to middle-aged patients, the NIH’s MedlinePlus library is available and updated frequently.
Accessing the site is easy and navigates similar to many online libraries with indexes and topical guidance based on age, gender and specific health related issues. Going to the site also allows you to receive updates by email when new content is made available or when existing material gets updated.
Agencies with patients whose native language may be other than English will also find materials in different languages. The materials in various languages also take into account different cultural differences as well to assist in patient education.
To access the general NIH library, visit: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/
For agencies who would like to just view senior and geriatric related educational material, please visit NIH’s senior site: http://nihseniorhealth.gov/