Abstract T P286: Telephone Support Program Promotes Stroke Survivor Knowledge, Self-Care, and Satisfaction
Background and Issues: Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death, and the leading cause of disability. Aside from physically disablement, stroke survivors often experience difficulty coping with life post-discharge. Knowledge of stroke symptoms is often low, even in patients who have suffered stroke. Programs designed to provide support and education to stroke survivors can be effective at promoting stroke knowledge and improving patient satisfaction.
Purpose: To evaluate the effectiveness of a telephone support program at promoting stroke knowledge, coping and self-care in stroke survivors.
Methods: The Rush Stroke Buddy Program was developed in 2011 to provide support for patients with ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke after discharge from Rush University Medical Center. The telephone program consists of monthly calls to patients who voluntarily enlist in the program. Each phone call has two facilitators, a nursing student (“Buddy”) and a stroke survivor (“Ambassador”), who are undergo intensive training including lectures given by a rehab physician, a behavioral psychologist, a spiritual care worker, a social worker, and a nurse educator. Each phone call follows protocol: the Buddy is responsible for discussing aspects of stroke symptom education, personal medical risk factor reduction, and reviewing medications; the Ambassador provides emotional support for the stroke survivor.
Results: Of 34 active participants since program inception, 17 (50%) agreed to be surveyed. 15 subjects (88%) felt the program empowered them to manage their health, addressed concerns, and helped them cope (94%). 13 subjects (76%) stated the program helped them overcome difficulties. All participants could name at least one stroke symptom; 14 subjects (82%) could name two or more. 13 subjects (76%) felt they better understood their medicines; 16 subjects (94%) felt they understood when to seek urgent medical attention. Sixteen subjects (94%) stated they would recommend the program to others.
Conclusions: The Rush Stroke Buddy Program provides stroke survivor satisfaction, reinforces stroke symptom knowledge, and provides emotional support. Although further research is needed on stroke support, this program overall improves patient coping, self-care and education.
Author Disclosures: Y.D. Lundy: None. S.Y. Song: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.