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Development of a patient-centered video series to improve outcomes for kidney and lung transplant patients

Holly Mansell and Nicola Rosaasen

Saskatchewan Transplant Program, Saskatchewan Health Authority, Saskatoon, SK


Background: Inadequate patient knowledge contributes to poor patient outcomes after transplantation. Kidney and lung transplant patients have indicated that the transplant process is confusing, and they want more education.

Objectives: 1) Conduct a needs assessment to determine optimal format and content, 2) develop a patient-centered educational intervention for kidney patients, 3) test the intervention’s effectiveness, 4) develop a similar resource for lung transplant patients.

Methods: Three studies were undertaken providing qualitative and quantitative feedback from patients on the kidney waitlist, kidney transplant recipients, and health care providers working in transplantation. A video series was created for kidney patients by engaging patient-stakeholders, experts in medication adherence, video education, motivational psychology, and cultural education. Two randomized-controlled trials were designed to test the videos delivered electronically in pre- and post-transplant cohorts. Consultations with patients and caregivers from the lung association informed the content for lung transplant videos. 

Results: ‘Solid Organ Transplantation: An Educational Mini-Series for Patients’ is a 6-part video series outlining the kidney transplant process in its entirety. The videos range between 3 and 24 minutes in length, are patient friendly in design, and incorporate animations to explain complex information to accommodate individuals with low health literacy. Patient testimonials align the content with principles of the adult learning theory. A similarly designed but newly scripted version of the series is intended for the lung transplant audience. Two multicenter, parallel arm, randomized controlled trials are currently being conducted to test the kidney videos (delivered electronically) in pre- and post-transplant cohorts, with collaborators from Saskatoon, Regina, Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax and Chicago.

Conclusion: These studies aim to determine whether electronic education can improve transplant knowledge, patient satisfaction and other patient outcomes (e.g. medication adherence). If proven beneficial, these interventions can be easily implemented and provide consistent, repeatable patient education at low cost, with little impact to existing health care personnel.