Return demonstration good evaluation method

"The best way to know if a learner can apply what he or she has learned when psychomotor skills are involved is to watch them try to do it," says Mary Szczepanik, MS, BSN, RN, manager of cancer education, support, and outreach at Grant/Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, OH.

The following is an example of the steps involved in patient teaching for central venous catheter care and the evaluation process that ensures learning:

• Review verbally:

— Reason for catheter

— Reason for home care

— Potential complications

— Troubleshooting

— Whom to call if you need help

• Demonstrate:

— Skin care

— Dressing application

— Injection cap change

— Flushing

— Troubleshooting

• Return demonstration:

— Each skill listed above, one at a time

• Provide:

— Written step-by-step instructions (with photos or illustrations) and/or a videotape.