Abstract NS7: The Texas Awareness Puppet Experience Leads to Improved Public Awareness of Stroke Symptoms and Response
Background and Purpose: Stroke treatment rates have been hindered by under recognition of stroke symptoms, delayed presentation and lack of utilization of Emergency Medical Services (EMS). The community is the first link in the chain of survival in Brain Attack. With an increasing trend of multi-generational homes in Texas, education of children on stroke symptoms and the importance of calling 9-1-1 is a prime opportunity for increasing community awareness. The Texas Awareness Puppet Experience (TAPE) is a pilot program seeking to increase the permanence of stroke community education through the use of a multisensory puppet experience. The purpose of this pilot study was to determine the efficacy of the TAPE program in improving community awareness of stroke across a variety of age groups.
Methods: TAPE was guided by Piaget’s Cognitive Development Theory in an effort to educate all age groups. Audiences watch a brief eight minute puppet show on stroke awareness that incorporates local EMS response with a paramedic arriving to the scene. The experience concludes with a hands-on activity of puppet-making. A pre-survey and post-survey was used to assess cognitive improvement related to stroke location, symptoms, and activation of EMS. The survey consisted of one demographic question (age) and three stroke questions with graphics. Chi-square was used to assess for statistical significance in stroke location and symptoms while Fisher’s Exact was used for activation of EMS.
Results: The post-survey showed statistically significant improvement in all three stroke questions. When comparing the pre-surveys (n=97) with the post-surveys (n=96), the greatest improvement occurred in identification of stroke as occurring in the brain (59.8% pre-survey vs. 91.7% post-survey, p<0.001). The correct identification of stroke symptoms improved from 73.2% to 96.7% (p<0.001) while the need to notify EMS increased from 90.7% to 100% (p=0.003).
Conclusions: The Texas Awareness Puppet Experience (TAPE) proved to be a beneficial tool when educating the community on stroke awareness. TAPE is effective in educating all age groups on the location of stroke, symptoms, and the need for immediate activation of EMS.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.