Video Program Educates Cardiac Patients and Staff


The Schulich Heart Centre is the cardiovascular program for Sunnybrook and Women’s College Health Sciences Centre. It offers a full spectrum of care including: acute cardiac in-hospital care, diagnostic cardiovascular procedures (such as ECGs, Echos, Dopplers, Holters and angiograms), interventional cardiac activities, a 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring program, electrophysiology (including pacemakers and automatic intra-cardiac defibrillators) and the Women’s Cardiovascular Health Initiative.

The program has developed a number of innovative education initiatives that help both the patient and members of the cardiac care team ensure that patients are receiving the highest quality care possible. The following are just two examples of these initiatives.

Innovative Cardiovascular (CV) Medication Education Video Program for Patients

Ongoing education for patients regarding their medication is an essential component in the long-term therapeutic management of patients with coronary heart disease (CHD). In 1998, a group of cardiovascular liaison pharmacists developed an innovative CV Medication Education Video Program to better meet the learning needs of patients with CHD and involve family members and other health professionals.

The program consisted of a series of 17 videotapes – each approximately 5 minutes in length – for common cardiovascular medications and/or medication classes. Each videotape is complemented by a pharmacy-developed medication information sheet as written reinforcement of the information discussed in the video. The combination of teaching materials was designed based on the principle that information which is consistently repeated, is retained and recalled more readily.

At Sunnybrook & Women’s, there are several venues for use of this medication education program by in-patients, out-patients and local community residents with CHD:

  • Patients admitted to Schulich Heart Centre (each patient service unit is equipped with a television and VCR for educational purposes);
  • Acute-care and extended-care patients hospital wide (the videos are available on the in-hospital HEALTH TV station) and
  • out-patients and local community residents (the complete CV medication education program is available for patients use in the “Health Information Centre”)

Innovative Tenecteplase Nursing/Pharmacy Education Video

In September 2001, the bolus fibrinolytic, tenecteplase, was approved by P&T for use in ST-elevation myocardial infarction. Recognizing the tremendous human resources required to educate the numerous nurses, specifically in the Emergency Department and the Cardiac Care Unit, regarding the proper administration and monitoring of tenecteplase, a tenecteplase nursing education video was developed in January 2002 (with the support of Hoffman La-Roche Ltd.)

To date, the video has been viewed by several nurses at Sunnybrook & Women’s and has been extremely well received. In addition, the video will also be incorporated in the orientation of new nursing staff. With our permission, Hoffman La-Roche Ltd. will distribute this resource to other Canadian health-care institutions faced with similar nursing educational needs regarding tenecteplase. A similar initiative is also underway for the administration of the glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors and will be supported by Merck Frosst Canada Inc.