Patient education

March/April 2014 Issue
Adding Health Education Specialists to Your Practice [Feature]

A health education specialist (HES) is a clinic staff member who can fill many roles now demanded in modern medical practices. In the authors' practice, the HES serves as both a health educator, encouraging patients toward more healthy behavior, and a health coach, helping patients choose and achieve defined health goals. These roles also include assisting physicians during Medicare annual wellness visits and coaching co-visits. The HES also can monitor care quality and oversee practice improvement initiatives, such as transitioning to a medical home model. Using non-medical personnel for HES positions, practices can still reap benefits from their specialized training while not having to remove nursing personnel from their increasingly important primary care responsibilities.

January/February 2014 Issue
A Few Moments of Lifestyle Advice [The Last Word]

With two minutes and two tools, you can help your patients make healthier choices.

January/February 2014 Issue
How to Bridge the Health Literacy Gap [Feature]

A significant percentage of patients have limited health literacy, meaning they have trouble finding, understanding, and using health-related information to make good decisions about their medical care and personal health. This can complicate a physician's attempts to explain a patient's condition and steer them toward better health decisions. Considering the likelihood of a patient's poor health literacy, physicians should adjust their communication strategy with all patients, making sure to use simpler explanations, focus on two or three key messages per visit, speak slowly, ask patients to repeat instructions to ensure understanding, and make sure printed materials are easy to understand.

March/April 2011 Issue
Four Strategies for Promoting Healthy Lifestyles in Your Practice [Feature]

The article outlines steps physicians can take to promote fitness (physical activity, nutrition and emotional wellness) to their patients, drawing on lessons from the AIM-HI research project.

May-Jun 2009 Issue
Eleven Patient Misconceptions About Antidepressants: How to Respond [Feature]

Patients may resist treatment for depression from a variety of misconceptions about the condition and its treatment. The author offers suggested counters to a variety of unfounded objections to treatment.

Mar 2007 Issue
Avoiding Counterfeit Drugs [Patient Education]

Mar 2007 Issue
Helping Your Patients Avoid Counterfeit Medications [Feature]

The author describes strategies that physicians and their patients can use to identify and avoid counterfeit medications.

Feb 2007 Issue
Simple Strategies to Avoid Medication Errors [Feature]

The article describes practical ways physicians can reduce medication-related errors in their practices.

Oct 2006 Issue
Sports Physicals: A Coding Conundrum [Feature]

The author describes how to code and get paid for sports physicals and how to manage sometimes differing expectations of the parent, the patient and your own as the physician.

May 2006 Issue
An Update on Tobacco Cessation Reimbursement [Feature]

Physicians' reimbursement options for tobacco cessation counseling include Medicare's recently broadened coverage, other insurance plans, and employee flexible spending accounts.

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