2021 CMSC Annual Meeting

Use of an Infographic for Individualized Patient Discharge Instruction in the Spinal Cord Injured and Disorders Population


Background: Nurses are responsible for providing patients with discharge instructions. Often, limited instruction is provided to the patient by the nurse due to time constraints and patient load, which may lessen adherence and understanding and increase the stress associated with discharge. This is especially true for those with a spinal cord injury or related disorder who are discharged home faced with medically and psychologically complex issues as they adjust to a new life. Purpose: The purpose of this quality improvement project was to categorize the medical and psychological issues, essentials of complex treatment and needed resources related to transition from hospital to home for those with a spinal cord injury or related disorder. Objectives: Categorize the unique physical, psychological and social need of persons with a spinal cord jury and disorders identifying common themes and differences which will be used to make an infographic for transition in home care setting. Create comprehensive education teaching aid in the form of an infographic that can be given to the patient and caregiver to facilitate a seamless transition from hospital to home. Methods: Thirty patient charts were reviewed over a two-month period. Fifteen of the patients were diagnosed with paraplegia and 15 with tetraplegia. The commonalities and differences in the needed care and necessary resources between these two groups was highlighted. The Information was developed into an infographic. The infographic was piloted with 10 patients prior to discharge. Patients, caregivers and the nurse using the infographic were asked to evaluate its ease of use, comprehensiveness, level of understanding, and whether there is a need for additional information. Results: Respondents agreed that the infographic was easy to understand and, covered the important information. Most disagreed that the infographic needed additional information. There was no statistical difference in the agreeability scores of the patient, nurses, and provider population on the four items used to assess the use of infographic (p-value >0.05). Conclusions: The use of infographics in the discharge of patients can potentially be a useful method as patients with Spinal Cord injuries and disorders transition from hospital to home.