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BMC Public Health. 2012; 12: 549.
Published online Jul 25, 2012. doi:  10.1186/1471-2458-12-549
PMCID: PMC3490769
Medication coaching program for patients with minor stroke or TIA: A pilot study
Elizabeth G Sides,1 Louise O Zimmer,2 Leslie Wilson,2 Wenqin Pan,2 DaiWai M Olson,3 Eric D Peterson,2 and Cheryl Bushnellcorresponding author1
1Department of Neurology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA
2Duke Clinical Research Institute, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, USA
3Department of Medicine, Division of Neurology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA
corresponding authorCorresponding author.
Elizabeth G Sides: esides/at/wakehealth.edu; Louise O Zimmer: louise.zimmer/at/duke.edu; Leslie Wilson: leslie.wilson/at/duke.edu; Wenqin Pan: Wendy.pan/at/duke.edu; DaiWai M Olson: daiwai.olson/at/duke.edu; Eric D Peterson: eric.peterson/at/duke.edu; Cheryl Bushnell: cbushnel/at/wakehealth.edu
Received May 3, 2012; Accepted July 13, 2012.
Abstract
Background
Patients who are hospitalized with a first or recurrent stroke often are discharged with new medications or adjustment to the doses of pre-admission medications, which can be confusing and pose safety issues if misunderstood. The purpose of this pilot study was to assess the feasibility of medication coaching via telephone after discharge in patients with stroke.
Methods
Two-arm pilot study of a medication coaching program with 30 patients (20 intervention, 10 control). Consecutive patients admitted with stroke or TIA with at least 2 medications changed between admission and discharge were included. The medication coach contacted intervention arm patients post-discharge via phone call to discuss risk factors, review medications and triage patients’ questions to a stroke nurse and/or pharmacist. Intervention and control participants were contacted at 3 months for outcomes. The main outcomes were feasibility (appropriateness of script, ability to reach participants, and provide requested information) and participant evaluation of medication coaching.
Results
The median lengths of the coaching and follow-up calls with requested answers to these questions were 27 minutes and 12 minutes, respectively, and participant evaluations of the coaching were positive. The intervention participants were more likely to have seen their primary care provider than were control participants by 3 months post discharge.
Conclusions
This medication coaching study executed early after discharge demonstrated feasibility of coaching and educating stroke patients with a trained coach. Results from our small pilot showed a possible trend towards improved appointment-keeping with primary care providers in those who received coaching.
Keywords: Stroke, Transitions, Prevention, Patient education
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