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From therapeutic patient education principles to educative attitude: the perceptions of health care professionals – a pragmatic approach for defining competencies and resources

Authors Pétré B, Gagnayre R, De Andrade V, Ziegler O, Guillaume M

Received 8 September 2016

Accepted for publication 27 December 2016

Published 22 March 2017 Volume 2017:11 Pages 603—617


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Benoit Pétré,1 Remi Gagnayre,2 Vincent De Andrade,2 Olivier Ziegler,3 Michèle Guillaume1

1Department of Public Health, University of Liège, Liège, Belgium; 2Educations and Health Practices Laboratory (LEPS), (EA 3412), UFR SMBH, Paris 13 University, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Bobigny, 3Department of Diabetes, Metabolic diseases and Nutrition, Nancy University Hospital, Nancy, France

Abstract: Educative attitude is an essential, if implicit, aspect of training to acquire competency in therapeutic patient education (TPE). With multiple (or nonexistent) definitions in the literature, however, the concept needs clarification. The primary aim of this study was to analyze the representations and transformations experienced by health care professionals in the course of TPE training in order to characterize educative attitude. We conducted an exploratory qualitative study using several narrative research-based tools with participants of two TPE continuing education courses. We then performed an inductive thematic analysis. Thirty-three people participated in the study; the majority were women (n=29), nurses (n=17) working in a hospital setting (n=28). Seven categories of statements were identified: time-related (“the right moment, how much time it takes”), the benefits of TPE (to health care professionals’ personal well-being), emotions and feelings (quality of exchanges, sharing), the professional nature of TPE (educational competencies required), the holistic, interdisciplinary approach (complexity of the person and value of teamwork), the educational nature of the care relationship (education an integral part of care) and the ethical dimension (introspection essential). The first three components appear fairly innovative, at least in formulation. The study’s originality rests primarily in its choice of participants – highly motivated novices who expressed themselves in a completely nontheoretical way. Health models see attitude as critical for adopting a behavior. Best TPE practices should encourage personal work on this, opening professionals to the social, experiential and emotional aspects of managing chronic illness.

Keywords: therapeutic patient education, attitude of health personnel, competence, professional

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