A mainstay of epilepsy management is patient education and engagement. Previous educational interventions have varied greatly in number of sessions, teaching methodology and cost. This study assessed the impact of a low-cost intervention consisting of a personal information pack.
Methods Forty-six consecutive patients with an existing epilepsy diagnosis attending clinic at MKUH NHS Trust were enrolled and pack provided. A baseline questionnaire assessed patient understanding and service utilisation (GP, A and E, specialist nurse). The questionnaire was repeated 3 months later. Patient engagement with the pack was assessed (completeness of information in pack, patient rating of usefulness).
Results Fourteen patients were lost to follow-up - thirty-two completed the second interview. There was a trend towards reduced service utilisation. Specialist nurse visits were significantly reduced (2.75 visits/year pre-intervention vs 1.11 post-intervention, p=0.01). Patient understanding was not significantly changed. Patient rating of usefulness was positive (2.4/3 on Likert scale). Two thirds of patients had not filled out the pack or added basic details only.
Discussion This simple, low cost intervention may reduce some types of service utilisation and be found helpful by patients. A planned redesign involves the provision of a low-effort pre-filled information card together with the larger pack.
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