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Cardiovascular disease – Patient education

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Cardiovascular disease – Patient education

Patient education for cardiovascular health should aim to increase knowledge and understanding as well as increasing confidence to bring about behaviour change. Health professionals can have a major impact on mortality and morbidity by helping people change behaviour.1 Telling someone they are either at risk of or increasing their risk of further cardiovascular disease (CVD) is not enough, they need support to make changes to avoid the onset of disease or early death. Patient education is influenced by many factors including environment, cultural beliefs, delivery methods, perceptions and health beliefs, social deprivation and the skills and knowledge of the person providing the education. 2,3

Aims and objectives

On completion of this resource you should have an understanding of:

  • The theory of behaviour change
  • Techniques to support progression through the stages of change
  • The importance of identifying patients’ commitment to change and confidence for change
  • Resources to support shared decision making
  • The role of cardiac rehabilitation and expert patient programmes in the education of cardiac patients

References/Further reading

1. Franklin BA, Brinks J, Friedman H. Foundational factors for cardiovascular disease: Behaviour change as a first line preventive strategy. Circulation, 128: 2169-76, 2013. Doi:10.1161/01.circ0000435173.25936 el

2. NICE PH 49: Individual approaches to behaviour change, 2014.

3. NICE PH 6: Behaviour change: The principles for effective interventions, 2007.